March is such a unique month. We go from cold nights and dreary weather directly into a month where Winter and Spring both flirt for our attention. Snow storm on a Monday followed by 55F and sunny the very next day! March keeps it interesting in New England and that’s probably why I find it so fascinating. This Spring is doubling down on how interesting it is after the past few years.
Since March 2020, we’ve been on a new level of living. We went from extreme lockdown to slowly (and I mean S L O W L Y ) re-emerging to a sense of pre-pandemic normalcy. Three years after the first lockdown we are starting to venture out more and feeling better about being out. It was almost like we had a Winter that lasted from March 2020 to March 2023.
This crisp and cool morning gave way to sunny skies and birds singing. People are in thinner jackets with bigger smiles as we begin to see the buds grow on trees and flowers try to burst from the ground. We are finally awakening. It reminded me of the passage from Song of Solomon:
For behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. —Song of Solomon 2:11-12
For me, Winter was more than just the COVID Winter. I have not written a blog post since October 2019. My father was heading into surgery for his heart failure. Although the surgery was initially successful, my father succumbed to complications following the procedure. As much as I am at peace with his passing and have found so much hope in knowing that I will see him again there was still a sense of loss and longing. I remember wondering the next day how the world kept moving. People were working and living their lives, and I couldn’t believe it because my father was no longer here so how was this possible? Almost a crazy thought that life could just proceed on. Now I see that my Grief Winter started in November 2019, and was further impacted by COVID’s Winter. I think I failed to write because how could I say anything that could possibly shine a light on the size of the loss of my father on my heart?
In August 2020, I also severely injured my knee and my physical pursuits came to an immediate halt. The subsequent surgery, physical therapy, and follow ups and I still have issues with my knee that have impacted all of my movement goals. That was the start of my INJURY Winter. This loss was so much because movement was my joy, my therapy, and how I best commune with Jesus in the quiet of long walks and road training.
This morning hearing the birds, feeling the sun on my face, and welcoming Spring I’m also saying farewell to all of my current Winters! The season of Winter is officially over today even if the weather does not agree! My Grief Winter is over because my father loved my writing and would only want me to continue to write and to share. My Injury Winter is over because I won’t let my current knee issues prevent me from living my life. I’ve been very cautious – actually afraid – of doing anything that could even remotely cause my knee any issues. Because of that I’ve held off on karate for fear of getting hurt! Movement has been a joy of mine since I had weight loss surgery and losing it has not been good for me. In the intervening months I’ve also gained weight which has also been hard. It was like God told the birds to share with me that Spring is here. Life is continuing. It’s time.
This Spring I am truly awakening! I’m going back to blogging, karate, and with the world becoming more accessible, speaking engagements are back in action as well. Winter is officially over… in all ways today! “The time of singing has come.” Hallelujah!
Are you ready for Spring or have you still been kept by your Winter?