Today’s commute from work was especially pleasant. Having left work uncharacteristically early, I drove west toward home. The late afternoon sun in my eyes prompted me to put on my shades. This time of year I wear sunglasses to cut the glare of light reflecting off the snow. Today was different. The way the sun was higher in the sky, even just before 5 p.m. made it feel spring-like. Nice.
Today’s drive in the sunshine was the perfect light therapy to beat the winter blahs. Enough with winter already. This winter season seemed never-ending. Until today. I could almost smell spring in the air, or maybe it was my imagination. No matter. Tomorrow is March 1st. I like March. My dad’s birthday was in March. March meant that Easter and spring break weren’t far off.
Thirteen days from today Daylight Savings Time begins! We spring forward. And, although we lose an hour of sleep, there’s an easy fix. Go to bed an hour earlier <giggle>. The thought of an extra hour of daylight at the end of the day makes me very happy indeed.
Twenty days from today is the first day of spring! At least so the calendar tells me. It’s almost a certainty that we have more snow to come. I must accept it. I don’t have to like it, but I accept it. There is a silver lining with most March snowfalls though. It’s a fair statement to say that snow that falls in March doesn’t usually accumulate. Unless we have an ice storm. Or a freak snowstorm. Both are possibilities, but let’s hope not probabilities.
March means spring is that much closer, and even though one or two storms may bring snow, we know it is temporary and that the end of winter is imminent. Spring offers the promise of new life, a season of renewal.
As a kid I remember hearing the old proverb, “March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.” That seemed like gospel to me. My memories of starting the month with a winter jacket and ending the month with a spring jacket are pretty vivid. I remember flying kites in March. I remember wearing “petal-pushers” (known today as capris) in March.
My mother and my aunts marked the coming of spring during the annual “spring cleaning” marathon. They went into high gear every spring when I was growing up. I remember my mother dismantling every room of the house, washing walls, cleaning cupboards, stripping and waxing floors, cleaning closets and washing bed linens and draperies. We don’t clean like that any more, either because we don’t have time or we just don’t care as much.
My mother was an expert seamstress and she often made our Easter outfits. Donna and I always matched. Somewhere there is an 8MM movie of us playing hopscotch in full Easter regalia, pink coats lined with the same print fabric as our dresses, bonnets, white socks and black patent shoes. All of our girl cousins are playing with us at my Grandma’s house.
Then, of course, as Catholics, March meant Lent and preparing for Easter. This year, Ash Wednesday is March 9th, the same date as my father’s birthday. Serendipitous, maybe, but March is the perfect gift this year. This is the year of finding my authentic self through the pursuit of quietness. I can choose to prepare for spring’s awakening by seeking my Father’s help.
So, let the lion enter. His mighty roar cannot stop the sun from shining or the hyacinths and tulips from blooming. I will shed my winter coat and slip on my spring jacket as I prepare for spring to fill my heart and my soul.