Wednesday, January 22, 2014

It is winter, the heart of winter, the sometimes-below-zero, often-snowing, roads are slick, windchill is insane winter.

Last night as I was trying to lose myself to sleep, I wondered why anyone chooses to live in a place where four months of the year is spent wading through winter to get to something livable again, only to have to sweat out four months of summer until the cool of fall returns. I wondered why I choose to live in a place like this.

I do like some things about winter. Sweaters. Mittens. Boots. The muffled sound after a snowstorm. I like sitting in front of a fire, drinking hot drinks, and sleeping in a chilly bedroom. I like the stamping of feet and shedding of layers when first stepping into the front door. I like warming up. I like knowing that I'm safe and warm, thinking about it, being grateful for it.

The definite change in seasons is a marking of time. Winter as a time to prepare for spring. Spring as a time to prepare for summer. Summer for fall, fall for winter. I need this change to remind me to prepare for what's ahead. The change gives me time to appreciate what is absent.

Both of my parents come from Nordic families, people who live without the sun for a season. It's in my bones, in my history, this need for the change of seasons. I love the dark days of winter because of the long days of summer. It's worthwhile tradeoff, and a rhythm my family has always sung.

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© The Attic at Anderwood Maira Gall.