Archive for March, 2014

The snow fell again today. I wasn’t prepared. Though it’s only March in the Dakotas, the sweet taste of temperatures higher than 60 on Wednesday had me feeling hopeful. I had hoped that the winter weather had run its course. I had hoped that I would wake up to another sunny, warm day. I had hoped to have my coffee on the deck.

Hope is a curious thing. It has a reputation for being something positive. People say, “have hope.” I think it’s overrated.

Hope is just another word for not being present to what is. It means, “I wish things were different.” It pushes us away from looking at the moment that we’re actually experiencing. And while every moment isn’t filled with awesomeness, there is something to be relished if we look close enough.


Winter’s last icy breath © Egidijus Mika | Dreamstime Stock Photos

I am giving up hope – and that’s not a bad thing. Instead of being hopeful, I will be present. When the snow falls I will watch the flakes fall to the ground and allow myself to be thankful for another day to enjoy my people. I will stand at the window and know that things happen with perfect timing, and when the trees are ready to push out their buds, the sun will shine on them and send them the light and warmth that they need to flourish. I will be watchful for the first crocus and feel the joy of anticipation. I will watch the robins hop from barren branch to barren branch, not hidden by the leaves that are so dense in the summertime.

At the very moment that my son pushes my patience to the edge I will not hope for life to be different, but will think about my own reaction to this small and curious person who is learning where his boundaries begin and end. I will not grow tired of watching him jump from one spot to another, chasing an imagined dragon or fighting life’s small challenges – like brushing his teeth. He is learning, and with him, I am learning.

Each day is a blessing. I realize with so much clarity now, that life is indeed short, and the moments we have shouldn’t be hoped away for a day that may not come or a wish in the distance. Today is precious in its imperfection.

So I suppose I am hopeless, and glad for it.



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Dear Mother Nature,

If I say uncle, will you back off? When I wake up tomorrow it will be 14 below 0 and I will drink my coffee and dread going outside. I will dread even more the clothes I am required as a good mother to make sure my son is wearing. This time of year that requires snow pants, boots, a ski mask, regular hat and insulated gloves, all which his little six-year-old brain must keep track of for more than 8 hours. This also means the dogs prefer not to do their business outside. Instead, they stand by the door and bark, waiting until they’re inside the warm sunroom where it’s so much cozier.

Coffee gets cold too fast, my feet are longing for warm green grass and I have a serious case of “I can’t stand this any longer.” If you’ve ever been struck by this seasonal disease you know the symptoms. The most irritating of these symptoms is the uncontrollable urge to complain…about the weather, and your salt-crusted car, and the price of gas, and the dirty floors in the foyer, and the winter gear tossed on the floor, and dripping boots, and dog pee in the middle of the sunroom.

I’ve forgotten what warm feels like, except when I’m awakened at night by hot flashes which have become commonplace for me over the last year.

And so dear Mother N, I would appreciate some consideration here. I will not only lose my mind if the weather doesn’t break soon, but I may also lose my husband, my friends and my ability to mother my child.

Be nice, okay?

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