|Snow-covered feeders await the day's first customers.|
Saturday, February 5, 2011
The Thaw. Coronary and Otherwise.
Last night, as I watched the last of yesterday's flakes dance and then disappear into the ginormous powder puff that was once my back yard, I tried determinedly to stifle the rancid case of pessimism that I'd been harboring the past four days. What gives? When did unabashed dread and acute mope-tastic behavior replace winter storm excitement?
Here's what I believe to be true of the parent psyche relevant to ice, snow and any other manner of winter's wrath:
Laundry piles up. Hourly. No sooner does one toss that last frayed fabric softener sheet into the trash can and stuff yet another newly-single sock into the rag bag does the next soggy, grimy, smelly round manifest itself. My children seem to be slow on the uptake on this one. You'd think after innumerable rounds of eye rolling, heavy sighing, grinding of teeth and 20-minute lectures on "The Essence of Clothes: Understanding Fabric's Attraction to the Coat Hanger & Dissecting Its Fear of the Floor", they'd learn to at least hide the barely worn clothing in some dark corner of the closet, temporarily sparing themselves yet another earful from me. Long days at home make for long hours in the laundry room. And there's no better catalyst for pessimism than laundry.
Watching the Aristocats thrice daily impairs mental function. Everybody wants to be a cat? Huh? We're not cat people. Our smelly outdoor Golden Retriever, and her severe lack of intelligence, is right up our ally. And I'm fairly certain she does NOT want to be a cat. Or perhaps she does. It could explain her constant consumption of the neighbor cat's byproducts. Right. Another story for another day.
Twenty-seven hands of Crazy Eights with a four and a five-year-old result in an inability to properly identify the cards held in one's hand. Jack? No, no, no. That's the "J" card. Queen of Hearts? Try the "Your Highness Sweet Pea" card. And throw out any previous understanding that there is any difference between a six and a nine.
But, after the kids were in bed, (...I make no claims that I bathed them or brushed their teeth. The five-year-old "won" at Crazy Eights, and presented a very convincing argument that winners never get dirty...) I found myself mesmerized by the scene out my window. It wasn't necessarily a bad day. Just a long one. And there was beauty to be found throughout it, if I would have ignored the laundry long enough to see it. Or snuggled on the couch for thirty minutes to watch it. Or realized the hilarity of matching "Super K Crown" cards to enjoy it.
And in the splendor of today's long-awaited sunshine, as the icicles drip away and the powder puff blanket sinks into the brown grass, the cold pessimism of my winter heart is melting, drop by drop. (Due in no small part to the fact that the kids are sleeping and my husband is attempting to match socks. Bless him.) And perhaps, with enough sunshine - and the school doors reopening - this mental hang up called winter will yet again earn my appreciation for the excitement that it once harbored.
But, then again... maybe I'm just dreaming of spring.