There’s a lot to love about Spring. The warmer temperatures, the bright colors on the trees as they sprout new buds, and the gorgeous array of flowers are all welcome signs that Winter is finally over. Spring is a time of hope, when nature seems to reawaken and we venture outside without bundling up first. It’s easy to understand why many people call it their favorite season, and I’m certainly always happy to see it arrive.
But Spring has its downside as well, and not just for those of us who suffer from seasonal allergies. (Though the runny nose, sore throat, itchy eyes and sneezing isn’t any picnic to live with, especially these days when every single allergy symptom is also on the list of Covid symptoms.) The problem with Spring, for me anyway, is that it involves a whole lot of work.
Spring cleaning my house is simply the beginning. Once I’ve given everything a thorough cleaning and airing, including painting touch-ups, I help my husband with the yard. We set up our patio furniture, rake the last of our neighbor’s leaves off our grass, haul out our flower pots to refill, trim bushes and plants, and spread the newly-delivered mulch. The big box-store commercials make preparing our yards for Spring look like so much fun, but after a few hours of steady work, trust me, the thrill wears off.
And then there’s the worst job of all: my annual “shifting of the wardrobe.” This involves removing all the Winter/Fall clothes from my closet and dresser and replacing them with my warm-weather clothes. It sounds easy, I know, but I struggle with this job each year. Spring’s fluctuating temperatures makes deciding what I should pack away and what I should leave out for another few weeks rather difficult. Then there’s the whole question of what I should do with a sweater that I bought (on sale, from a high-end store) three years ago and haven’t worn once. Or the blouse that I’ve worn many times, because I’ve been wearing it for twelve years. Just how long is too long to hang on to a blouse? These are not decisions that I make easily.
I know my life would be simpler if I lived in a house that had a closet big enough to store all my clothes year-round. But as hard as it is for me to sort through everything two or three times a year, I also know it’s actually a good thing. It forces me to evaluate my clothes and make a conscious decision on exactly what I want to keep, and helps me recognize when the time has come to get rid of a sweater I once loved but has long since lost its shape and no longer fits. It’s sort of a “fashion renewal.”
I still love Spring, despite my allergies and all the work it brings. Sprucing up our yard, buying new flowers to plant, and weeding out my wardrobe is worth the effort, because discarding what no longer works and actively making room for new things gives me hope. And the hope that comes from renewal is the very best part of Spring.