The last day of a typically snowy, wintry month. Only today it hit 56 degrees. What a heat wave in the middle of winter! My husband used to always say spring really began on February 15th. He was a big conservationist and believed in climate change, which my son says replaced the old term "Global Warming." But I wish I could have proved him wrong about his own personal spring theory. Because the past eight years since his death, the winters have been especially harsh. So this winter has really been a big blessing for me. One less obstacle to deal with in widowhood land.
On top of everyday life, being a widow in winter brings on the ever cold bed that once was so much warmer when shared with a partner. There is the rash of holidays starting with the early Thanksgiving and ending with Valentine's Day. For me in the Midwest there is the added car maintenance and worry about driving in hazardous weather. The days are so long, overcast and dark. Well, enough description, you get the idea - I am depressing myself!
We use certain days as markers in our lives. I have always used Valentine's Day not to mark the end of winter, as my husband did, but to symbolize that the end is near. In recent years, I have come to believe that if I can make it to Feb. 15th, the worst is over and I'll survive the final month to spring.
My husband and I used to always write down the first day we noticed that the grass was really green. It would usually fall around March 21st. I would mark the date on a post it note, then put it up on the fridge and throughout the next winter glance at that date with hope. I kept the last post it note from the spring before my husband died up on the fridge until we moved from our home. And then I took it down and put it with paperwork to be saved, though where it is now, I haven't a clue. But when I move, unpack and eventually come across that note, I will put it back up on my new fridge.
In the meantime, just 14 days til V-Day, which I no longer look at so much as a romantic holiday. But it is still okay to look at it as a beacon of light shining through the winter gloom and illuminating the green of March!