We are under a winter storm advisory for the next 40 hours! This morning wasn't too bad dropping the boys off at school, although there was an accident near the high school. There always seem to be those on days like this. Poor, inexperienced teen drivers going off the road and hitting the signs of businesses. This car's whole front end was crushed.
As I was driving with the snow coming down I thought about how these winter storms are similar to widowhood. The first time one hits in late November or early December, there is a sense of resolve and strength is facing the novelty of it. Getting through it one thinks, "Now that wasn't so bad. I did it. We made it through!" But by the time you're on the fourth or fifth snowstorm, some of that optimism and courage has faded. "Not this again! I can't bear another one of these. When will spring be here?"
Another factor in battling the storm of widowhood is that one has to face the challenging elements on one's own, when in the past they were faced with a partner. Then, to top that off the widowed are in various stages of grieving. So add into the mix having to cope and carry on while being depressed and/or hopeless. We're tired and not thinking too clearly, yet we're plunged into a situation where we need to remain alert and exert ourselves physically. No wonder as the weeks go by we become even more depleted while those around us expect us to be stronger!
Having to keep running on empty is a good description here. The novelty has definitely worn off.
The untouched will come back with wisdom such as "Hang in there. Spring is coming. It is just around the corner." But the snow falling just seems to represent more of an avalanche to me. I feel like I am being buried alive. I've been through a number of winters and springs now. Yes, the spring returns but eventually so do the snowstorms. This is becoming more depressing than I'd thought it would. Sorry for the discouraging imagery.
I tried to plan for this winter onslaught by doing my running around yesterday. The nursing home facility I visited and applied at actually expressed some interest in hiring me. But the big boss wasn't there so they couldn't make an offer. I knew that I'd be cooped up inside today and have given myself permission to take some time off to knit a heart as a decoration for the door. I will bake a chocolate chip coffee cake for the boys. Tonight I am making a dinner I always make on snow days. Pure comfort food and it will use those 99 cent chicken cutlets I just bought. You mix a box of Stove Top Stuffing with the turkey or chicken, add sour cream, a can of cream of chicken soup and some frozen vegetables. Bake at 350 - the recipe can be located at Stove Top's web site. It also used to be on the back of the box but since I am only buying off-brand items these days I'm not sure if it is still there!
I am making this dish for myself since the boys aren't that fond of it. It is comfort food I enjoy. I am giving myself some scheduled time off today to knit because I know I am depleted, tired and have reached a point where the snowstorms are making me a little stir crazy! I suppose that is the moral of this winter tale. We have no choice but to face the snow falling. Spring is still pretty far off in the distance. Until it arrives, it is up to us to carve out little pockets of thaw in our lives in whatever ways we can. For me, that involves cooking, baking, food, reading and knitting.
For all of those who are facing winter snowstorms that were never predicted and blew into your life with such force and intensity you were knocked off your feet, you have my sympathy and compassion as we all pick up our snow shovels to face the blinding winds yet another time!
Today I am grateful:
1. For snow plows.
2. For meteorologists.
3. For the National Weather Service.
4. For weather predictions so accurate they can advise you when the first flakes will actually start falling.
5. For instant stuffing mix and all other convenience foods someone had to invent way back that do make our lives easier.