(Side note. Or rather top note. Ironically, I started this post on May 2nd. Since then winter has leap frogged right over spring and into summer temperatures. Folks are complaining about that too! Because this post was written in bits and pieces, finding something worthwhile may be like looking for a needle in a haystack. Have at it, friends!)
The weather seemed almost scripted.
Thick, heavy snow fell from a dark, portentous sky as I covertly led the HH into the school, down a couple of hallways and then into the classroom where I work.
No one is allowed into the building without a school ID or visitor’s pass and my overactive imagination already had the room filled with security guards and over-sized deans interrogating me and confiscating the pliers and the knife that my husband had in his possession. Though he is as handsome as any Hollywood legend, I was certain that the fresh, large scar on his face gave him an ominous appearance and the authorities would have him on the floor, handcuffed – the requisite overturned desks adding to the mayhem – before he could utter a word.
Okay, maybe I’ve started watching too many action movies with the HH. (I never finish them because the foot rubs put me to sleep.)
There were no security guards, no interrogations , no hubby face down on the carpet with a knee in his back. In fact, no one gave us a second glance. Sigh. Such an uneventful life I live.
Instead, the HH was warmly welcomed by my co-workers and became the hero of the hour when he spent the next ten minutes replacing the defective electrical plug on our classroom refrigerator. A week prior, fire inspectors had ordered the teacher I assist to fix the fridge or get rid of it.
Naturally I had volunteered my very capable (and very handsome-in-spite-of-the-scar) husband for the Save the Refrigerator project. As usual, he didn’t let me down, and a short time later I escorted him to the door, which I managed to open without setting off any alarms, and and sneaked a quick kiss before he headed out into the snow.
Yes. Into the snow.
On May 1st.
Six weeks after the calendar announced the arrival of spring.
The next day I again woke up to a winter wonderland and an icy drive to work.
Bitterly cold wind cut through my thin slacks as I cautiously hurried across the street and fumbled with the ID that gave me access to the building. A blast of grumbling apparently rode in on the gale; folks were indignant that snow had the audacity to show its frigid face round these parts, at this time of year.
This is Colorado. We get winter during spring.
While that might be momentarily inconvenient or frustrating and not what we think we want, it is certainly what we need in order to get what so many of us really DO want..
Isn’t that human nature? To want something – like camping without fire bans, and the possibility of lush, green lawns, and no city-wide water restrictions – but we buck and fight against what it takes to get there? Especially here, in America, the land of I-Want-It-Now-And-I-Want-It-For-Free?
I’ve mentioned before that I get deep longings for the place where I grew up. I love Vermont in spring, when the green is so vibrant it takes your breath away, when the ground is plush and cool beneath bare feet.
(Okay, okay. And because that’s when creemee stands open.)
Then there’s the Vermont autumns. Oh, a New England Autumn needs to be experienced to be understood! The hillsides are set ablaze with so many hues of oranges and reds and yellows and purples that driving the winding country roads when the sun says goodnight is like viewing a God created laser show. Except better.
Some things in life are so poignant, so stirring, so enjoyable that they are almost painful in their beauty. It’s different for everyone.
Perhaps your moments include racing down a mountain with ski poles in hand. Or playing with children in a third world orphanage. Or a sunset on a Hawain beach. Or the first tiny cry of a newborn. Or casting a fishing line out on a lake as the sun yawns and stretches and rises from slumber.
Driving through the Vermont mountains when the trees don their resplendent autumn ball gowns and courtesy for all to see is on my list, so beautiful it creates an inexplicable ache deep within.
But those resplendent fall colors come at a cost.
Seemingly endless winter months of gray skies and snow and wet mittens and frozen windshield wipers and runny noses and piles of snowsuits.
And then the snow gives way to springtime rains and the ground becomes a sponge that cannot hold another drop and folks gripe and complain and wonder if the sun will ever shine. Mud is tracked throughout the house and restless children who have been cooped up too long bicker and mope.
It’s the price for all of those splendid colors.
Life can be a lot like that.
We desire something, sometimes with a visceral longing that we can’t even define, but we don’t want or recognize what it takes to get there.
Have you ever considered the very thing you are complaining about, the situation you are frustrated with, the circumstance you don’t understand, the hard thing, is a gift from God to bring you to the place you most want to be?
I heard from College Boy last night. I asked how his training was going, and was surprised by his answer. “It’s been one of the best weeks ever… I’ve learned a ton and feel like I’ve worked harder in training this week than I have at anything except maybe Mock Trial.”
His internship is a HARD thing, and it is going to be a challenging summer, yet he sees the benefits and calls it good.
That makes this mother’s heart happy.
Because I’ve learned that the best places, the most fertile and abundant lands have been reached only after arduous and challenging paths; we may arrive with blistered feet and aching backs but it is so worth the climb.
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. Romans 8:19
(Oh, I know that this verse refers to a bigger picture: any suffering for Christ we experience in this present age will be forgotten when we enter into His eternal glory. But I believe it is also for the practical, the everyday smaller “sufferings.” When we endure and persevere through trials – by faith in and the strength of our Redeemer – a glorious thing will be revealed to us.)
It is the rain and the snow that carry in the most brilliant colors.
Hang in there.