As I type this, warm and cozy in my pj's and sipping my morning coffee, Jason is outside in full winter gear, shoveling what appears to be fifty feet of snow that fell sometime between 9 pm and 7 am last night. Yesterday was warm and sunny, and I preferred to laugh at the dire winter storm warnings the meteorologists were offering, because really, how often are they right?
They were right. Last night I laid in bed and listened to the wind howl, and I tried to embrace what I love about winter. Snow makes me anticipate Christmas, and can provide a happy, fuzzy glow of contentment and joy when you look out the window. It can also stir up intense panic and fear about driving on bad roads, poor visibility with blowing snow, the huge pain of bundling small children in layers of clothing, mitts and hats, and worry that the next 5-10 cm of snow forecast on a night when Jason is out of town means I have to spend thirty minutes shoveling like he is doing now.
I like snow, but not storms. I'm sure this is a universal feeling. I like driving on snow that is packed and not slick, so I don't worry I'll end up in the ditch with my kids in the van. I like the sensation of hunkering down and being cozy in the cold winter months; it's just the worry about the storms that becomes the problem, for I don't like to stop my life due to the weather.
God is working with me on many of my fears and issues right now. Last night I thought about how I like to move three steps ahead of any given possibility and consider it from all angles, but that becomes exhausting and stressful. I am not great at allowing situations to develop and dealing with them as they arise, but sometimes winter weather is a good reminder to do the best I can, and nothing more.
I expect so much from myself all of the time, so it becomes a relief to surrender to the unknown. While I lay in bed at 2:30 am listening to the wind howl, it's a useless exercise to worry about the domino effect of not driving William to preschool and wondering if that will effectively cancel my hair appointment when I'm desperate for a cut and colour. I simply can't know at 2:30 am what the roads and the wind will be doing at 8:40 am, when I need to make the decision.
I felt that still, small voice whisper to my stressed mind, and I felt instantly calmer. I cannot work out all possibilities, and I don't need to. I can simply take it as it comes, and trust my intuition to guide me. It sounds so simple to type it here, but it is life changing if I can actually follow this advice to myself.
On the way home from her voice lesson last night, Ava said, "Mom, it's okay if you aren't the best at something, as long as you have fun, right?" I agreed with her, as I've likely told her that at some point in her life so far, but it struck me that I really want to dig deep and live this in front of my kids, instead of simply paying lip service to it. Maybe the beginning of our winter storms can show me the way. I don't need to have it all figured out; I just need to have a little fun.