All Good Things

It seemed to me that this past Winter was especially hard.  My home town was spared the horrible blizzards that devastated other parts of the Midwest, but our Winter was still made up of months of very cold temperatures and too much snow and ice.  I don’t know if it’s my age or that my volunteer job of walking dogs at the local animal shelter means I’m outside for long periods of time, but whatever the reason, I don’t tolerate the cold very well.  The blood drains out of my fingers, leaving them bleached white and painful, my nose runs continuously, and my eyes tear so much that everyone thinks I’m crying.

So you can see why I was really, really, ready for Winter to be over, even as the frigid temperatures hung on and the promise of Spring seemed so very far away.  I often found myself wondering just how big of a beach-front Florida condo we could buy if we sold our house and drained our savings accounts.  Sometimes I thought about just staying in my nice warm bed all day, reading books and eating hot soup.  I even toyed with the idea of having all the supplies I needed delivered to me so that I didn’t have to venture out into the cold.

But I didn’t act on any of those crazy impulses.  Instead, I just kept to my regular routine, knowing that sooner or later, Winter would give up and leave, making room for the Spring that I was longing for.  And sure enough, Spring finally showed up.

fullsizeoutput_5070The past couple of weeks have been (mostly) wonderfully warm, with just enough rain to wash away the nasty tree pollen that triggers my allergies.  The flowers are blooming, the trees are budding, and the birds are singing outside my window every morning.  The days are getting longer, and it now stays light well into the dinner hour, which means we can both cook and eat outside on our patio.

I believe Winter comes to all of us in many ways.  Some times it’s the literal Winter of cold, nasty weather and long, dark nights.  Other times, it’s the hardships and losses that that we suffer through and that can make life feel so very difficult, both physically and emotionally.  There are times when it seems as if our personal Winter will never end.

fullsizeoutput_507dThat’s when it helps me to remember that at the end of every seasonal Winter, no matter how hard and how long it has been, comes Spring.  The sun gets a little stronger, the temperatures a little warmer and the days last a little longer with each passing week.  And that reminds me that the dark days in our personal lives don’t last forever either.  It may take a long time, but eventually our burdens will feel just a little bit lighter, our hearts will feel just a little bit warmer, and our spirits will celebrate the arrival of our very own Spring.

101 thoughts on “All Good Things

  1. Beautifully written Ann and so very true. Here it’s Autumn and the days are unpredictable. Some, like today, are balmy and warm and some are hinting at the coldness of a winter still to come. But you’re right, that’s life isn’t it and one way or another we cope with it all. Enjoy your blossoming spring. 🌸

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  2. I was ready for winter to end too, Ann. I think those dark days that surprise us in our personal life have a way of making us appreciate the bright moments a little better. They also make me appreciate the little things, like the first spring tulip bursting to life or the bird sitting on a branch singing his welcome spring song.

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  3. I don’t even live in a place that gets that cold, but this winter was more difficult for me. I used to toy with the idea of moving somewhere that got actual seasons, but this year have put that thought away permanently.

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    • Yes, four seasons are nice, except for when it’s been hovering around zero degrees for about a week! Then you appreciate living somewhere permanently warm a bit more…. Thanks for the comment, Denise!

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  4. Hi Ann. Yes, thank goodness that winter is in the rearview mirror. I think I liked winter when I was younger. But not so much anymore. The cold air is bothersome, driving on icy roads is bad news, shoveling snow is a pain, etc.

    Three cheers for spring! See you —

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    • I know! I watch those HGTV shows where people are buying beach front homes and think, “That could be me!” But I really don’t want to leave my house and all my friends and family behind. So I stay put, and just hope for an early Spring!

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  5. Wise philosophy but I still wonder why anyone would live in such icy cold places … ok I did endure a few bleak winters in the Himalayas in a concrete room with feet of snow and power outages for 5-9 days at a time … they cut the villages so the cities can have the power they need??
    But now i’ve returned to a temperate climate I can’t believe I did that … give me sunshine every day!

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  6. A heartwarming post, Ann … winter, whether literal or metaphorical, is a tough time and it’s a joy as light and warmth becomes the new normal! A wonderful array of pictures to accompany your post as I sit reading it and enjoying the sunshine of Sweden on my Easter break and a welcome relief from the gray cold of the past few months in the U.K. 🌺🌼

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    • I’m so glad you are enjoying the Spring sunshine, Annika! Sometimes it seems as if Spring will never get here, especially in our personal lives. But if we can only hang on long enough, it always comes. Always!

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  7. A post that has resonated with a lot of people Ann, a beautiful metaphor for life, grief, challenges, and the pull of sun and physical comfort with the emotional comfort of being near loved ones! Happy Easter. Marie xx

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    • Thank you Marie! Sadly, I know a lot of people who are struggling right now, and I think that is where this post came from. I wanted to remind them that Spring will come, even for those who are experiencing the toughest challenges. And it helps me to remember this as well, when I am going through hard times.

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    • You’re right, Joe! The hard times make us appreciate the good times even more. If life were always easy, we’d never realize how good we had it. And sometimes, we can be the “Spring” for someone else, and that is a gift for us all!

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  8. Years ago we had a vacation condo in FL that was near the beach. As a northerner it was initially fun to visit it in the winter, but eventually we sold the place. I’ve never missed going there in the winter because, like you said, the change from the cold days of winter into the warm days of spring is worth noting and appreciating. Something that never happened while we could opt out of winter and sneak south. You live, you learn.

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    • That’s a good point, Ally! If we were able to escape all of Winter every year, we never really would appreciate Spring. (And honestly, Winter is nice for a while…the only real problem is that it lasts too long!) We do learn more as we grow older. Which I like to think is why I knew better than to sell our house and drain our savings just in order to buy a beach-front home!

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  9. Such a beautiful post Anne. I can’t imagine living somewhere without the changing of the seasons, I love them all! Spring brings such a sense of renewal in so many forms☀️🚴‍♀️🌷.

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  10. Nicely put. I ran away from the more severe winters (Minnesota) while still young, but even here in the NW the cold, grey, and rain gets old. Spring is a bit slow out of the gates here too, but it’s definitely here. And if it ever stops raining, I’ll go out and enjoy it! 🙂

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  11. I’m not a winter person either, Ann. It seems like each one gets longer and darker. Your thoughts on Florida reminded me of my idealistic thoughts of Mesa. But I remember you’ve been to Florida in the winter before and it sounds like it was nice and warm. Maybe I should try Florida next time instead!
    Either way, I’m glad to see that spring is coming to your neighborhood, and I’m with you in celebrating the end of another long winter.

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    • I’ve never been to Mesa, so I think I ought to try that too! Florida is warm and pretty in the Winter, but it can also be crowded since it’s a popular destination. If you focus on parts of it that aren’t quite so well known, I bet you’d like it a lot. And that break from the Winter cold is wonderful!

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  12. Really enjoyed this metaphor. It’s quite fitting for me–a writer suffering from season affective disorder and PTSD. My best season is summer. Spring in New England teases: 70 degrees and sunny one day, 40 degrees and raw the next. Still, the crocuses are up; a reminder I’ve survived another winter…

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  13. Ann, I can relate completely to what you said about the cold weather – always said I’d rather be too warm than too cold any day of the week and twice on Sunday – but your reminder about other kinds of ‘winter’ coming to an end is such timely advice for us at the moment. Thank you.

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  14. Aches and allergies seem to arrive for us as we get older. I know that to be the case for me. I’m so glad Spring has sprung for you. Your post was a nice reminder to hang in there until the rough season passes. Beautifully written as always. I’d like to re-post it if I can figure out how to do it. =)

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  15. Reblogged this on Thoughts of a Wanderer and commented:
    One of my favorite bloggers, Ann Coleman, recently wrote this post about hanging on through difficult seasons. I wanted to reblog it to encourage others who might read it here.

    “I just kept to my regular routine, knowing that sooner or later, Winter would give up and leave, making room for the Spring that I was longing for.  And sure enough, Spring finally showed up.”

    Liked by 1 person

  16. So glad Spring has sprung for you too now, Ann! I don’t do good with the cold either. 😂 And I think that those impulses you had – ordering supplies, staying in bed reading and eating hot soup – are completely understandable and not crazy at all. 😉

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