The snow is not over.
It will never be all the way over.
(unless you live in certain parts of the world, in which 'snow' can be replaced with either heat or bugs)
It comes back, whether it's in 8 months or 2 weeks. And some people hate it and some people love it. And some of us love it one day and hate it the next.
I've thought a lot about it lately. And the snow draws this strong parallel to opposition/trial/heartache for me. Maybe because in a lot of ways snow can pose literal opposition. Whether it's opposition getting out of your driveway, or having to shovel or just the feeling of being freezing cold. None of those feel quite like the warm sun on your skin, am I right?
Anyways, I feel like it's ok to stay in for a day when it's just too much. And it's ok to not drive to the gym at 5am when the roads haven't been plowed. But life does have to go on, and we have a choice what we do with that bit of truth. We can go out and shovel before first light and enjoy the quiet peace and exercise that comes with that, or we can do the same and be miserable and cold. We can prepare to go out in that snow by wearing the right clothing, and driving the correct way for the weather, or act in protest of reality and be miserable.
And everything applies the same way to opposition. Some days we're going to need to stay in and take cover, whatever that looks like. Some days we're going to need to show ourselves grace and be okay if we were too overwhelmed to do the dishes or mop the floors (or feed the baby well-rounded meals or go to the gym more than once a month haha) But life does go on- it must. We must continue to get up and brave the snow, so to speak. We must do all we can, and wear warm clothes and pray our guts out and make the best of that alone/crawl-in-a-hole-to-deal time, keep our important relationships as in tact the best we can, and then go out and keep living. And believe it or not, there are beautiful moments in the chaos if we will recognize them. And the sun will come out eventually, even though some storms seem to last forever. And every long winter helps you to appreciate a warm spring, and every bad relationship helps you appreciate your healthy relationships, and every illness helps me feel grateful for my health, and every hard day makes me grateful for easier days.
I've heard people say that they are grateful for their trials, and I wasn't sure that I really believed that. I mean, grateful for them?? But I'm starting to slowly understand it. When I get to the end of my life I want my life to have character and meaning. I want it to have texture and depth and understanding, and I honestly believe that the way we handle our trials is one of the things that most thoroughly has that effect on our lives.
I'm not saying I love trials (is that even possible?). I don't ask for them in my prayers or accept them with open arms. They are hard and painful and soul-stretching, which is uncomfortable at minimum. I'm just saying that I've done a bit of aforementioned soul-stretching, and am working on becoming more through my trials. On strengthening my muscles through shoveling the snow, so to speak.
Maya Angelou said it best, "Surviving is important, thriving is elegant"
So here's to striving for more days of elegance.