Monday, October 25, 2010

What Would Make It Better?

Autumn in Red Wing



Last winter. Ugh.

Normally I love autumn, and Halloween. This year I still love autumn, but more than usual it is tinged with dread about winter. And since where I live, autumn is very brief and winter is very long, that makes it a little hard to fully enjoy autumn. It's like the Sunday afternoon of seasons. You're trying to have a good time and squeeze every drop of pleasure out of it, and yet you know what's coming next, and its looming presence casts a pall over the moment. Winter is the Monday morning of seasons. If Monday morning lasted five months.

I have never loved five months of winter, but I've always looked forward to the beginning of winter--as I do the beginning of every season. But not this year. I'm not even happy about fall turning cold--which hasn't happened yet, amazingly. But I know the cold is coming, and I am not ready for the chill.

I think last winter scarred me. It was long. Trying. Very, very icy. There were two months straight when every outdoor paved surface was covered in a hard casing of ice, and I ran four days a week at almost a crawl, barely able to take a step without falling. It sucked. A lot of times I just skipped the run and opted for sweets in front of the fireplace, and I had the winter weight gain to prove it. Life was dreary and difficult and boring and cold. It sucked.

I am not relishing the idea of living through that again.

Also, summer was so incredibly awesome that it's been really hard for me to consider letting go of all the park playdates, the racing outside to play in sandals and no jackets, the hours in the backyard with the kiddos cavorting in the sun and breeze. It went by way too fast. As is autumn.

So, this year--although we just finished a super-fun school fall vacation, during which we played at the park with friends, hosted a playdate, made autumn-leaf cookies, and went to Red Wing, and all that autumnal activity was great--even the thought of Halloween sort of makes me want to lie down and cry. Or at the very least take a nap. Because after Halloween comes November, and cold wind, and snow flurries, and hosting Thanksgiving, and all the cooking and baking and eating and difficulty running that will quite possibly herald the return of the extra pounds.

I just want to bolt outside after dinner with bare legs and arms and run down the street and off to my favorite trail to pound out my six miles in the glowing sunset. I don't want to put on tights and fleece and gloves and a hat and freeze the whole time. I don't want to wrangle two children into snow pants and parkas and boots and hats and mittens just to walk half a block down to the bus stop every morning at 8 a.m. I don't want to stand at the bus stop in windchills of 20 below zero. I don't want to be trapped inside with two small children most days because you can't really play at the park in mittens and boots with three feet of snow. And when children are very little, they are limited in their stamina for playing outside in the snow in the backyard. Their little cheeks get chapped and snow gets down their boots and down the necks of their jackets and they cry. Then they come to the back door and press their mittened palms and their faces against the glass and beg to come in. You sort of have to let them.

To summarize: last winter sucked, last summer rocked, autumn is too short.

Uh...Happy Halloween?

1 comment:

Rita said...

I have MUCH compassion for you. Here in Oklahoma City it *maybe* snows a couple of times all winter. And the temperatures only drop into the single digits for a few days in late January. And even on those RARE days, I loathe the cold and all the extra "mommy-work" it brings (OMG with the bundling!). I cannot IMAGINE doing it for 5 solid months. I'd truly go insane.
You have every right to be grumpy!