I was sure I was causing brain damage

I’ve been away from seasons long enough to forget how they feel – how there are waves of intensely doing something, and then a void of the activity (or food), sometimes all together.

Unaccustomed to being stuck indoors so much, this winter we got into the bad habit of passing time with television and movies. Yes, both my kids watch TV.   Probably more than is recommended and definitely more than I like.

For a month or so, I attributed this “parenting down fall” to an innate disfunction of my parenting and wondered why I couldn’t get out of this bad habit. In January and February especially I was sure I was causing brain damage and would be spending my hard earned retirement undoing the damage to my children’s psyche through expensive and extensive therapy.

And then the weather warmed, and the light returned and suddenly, without effort, we were not watching movies or shows. The lap top would stay tucked away all day until the children went to bed and the sun had set. And even then, the option to open a good book was sometimes more enticing.

All too slowly, I came to remember seasons, and not the seasons of life.  No, I mean the actual environmental seasons.  The ones that we can attribute snow and pollin to.  The ones that are impacted by the “nonexistent” climate change.  The ones that our little family (okay… I) have been running from the past five years abroad.  Those seasons.

But this year I came to a realization.  Seasons are a double edged sword.  On one hand, winter was really hard on us – physically and psychologically.  On the other hand, I cannot remember a year when I was so joyous about the return of light and sun and reasonably priced and decent flavored produce.  It’s almost as if the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu have hit the nail on the head when they wrote about  joy and it’s seemingly interconnected partner – suffering.

Welcome light, and spring, and warmth. I know I’ve said this often this season, but more than any year before, I am so grateful you have come.


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