"It's as if a great bird lives inside the stone of our days and since no sculptor can free it, it has to wait for the elements to wear us down, till it is free to fly." Mark Nepo

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Snow Day


As I sat here this morning working and waiting for the sliver of pink I so often see in the east just before day truly breaks, what I saw instead were flashes of white against the clinging darkness. It was snowing. I figured it would be a few random flakes that would turn to rain soon, as is often the case here.

The lighter it got, however, the heavier the snowfall. Soon the ground was as white as the air, and not much later I found myself surrounded by winter.

There have been many times when this snow would have been a burden to bear, an occasion to escape into some warm comfort. Today, I'm finding a deep and healing comfort in its presence. The cold of a snowy day is much different than the cold of a rainy day. Snow cold is clean and alive and rushes into my head like the scent of lavender in the summer.

The world is two colors right now: the purest white possible, and everything else muted to a dark green. Simple and soothing.

Kathleen's death, her absence, has been close this week. Somewhere I read that you never get over losing a child, it just becomes more permanent over time. It feels as though another line has been etched in stone. I don't know why now, and I guess it doesn't matter.

For a time the snow fell in thick sheets, filling the air with what looked like little tissues sent directly from heaven to honor tears spilling from a broken heart.

Later I stood on my front porch, trying to capture something of the magic with my camera, and just stood for a bit. Bare-footed. No coat. No protection at all. My feet grew quickly numb and I didn't mind. It made me think that some numbness is necessary to allow space for healing, to give rest. Paradoxically, the cold also brings feeling into much sharper focus.

I absorbed the weighted stillness, a silence only possible under snow's sound-damping blanket. A vast empty space big enough to hold all my sadness and all my gratitude in one embrace. And it felt like such a gift, that absolute nothingness containing the promise of everything.

23 comments:

Linda Myers said...

A lovely, contemplative post.

K.M. Weiland said...

This is beautiful on so many levels. Visually stunning. I've never had the opportunity to watch snowfall at sunrise, so thank you for letting me share your experience.

DJan said...

As a mother who has lost two, one when he was an infant, and the other when he was in the military, married and happy, I can tell you it's true: you never get over it, but the experience changes, as everything does, over time. I now think of both of my sons with pleasure, not pain. I wish the same for you some day.

Linda Hoye said...

I remember the silent peace that snow falling brings. Your post brought that serenity back to me - a welcome break in the midst of a busy day. Thank you.

Stacy Crawford said...

The big fluffy white snowfalls are the best. Each season brings such great things to make us feel and ponder.

Charlene: the Polarblogger said...

Deep feelings expressed beautifully! It's another post that is delightful to read.
Snow days can also give me a sense of serenity and a sentimental recollection of past experiences.

LauraX said...

"It made me think that some numbness is necessary to allow space for healing, to give rest. Paradoxically, the cold also brings feeling into much sharper focus." Deep, deep wisdom her Deb...yes both/and! You are healing and it hurts and you ARE healing through this season and into the next. May you feel safe, and happy and loved and continue to discover moments of sweet peace between the storms.

yaya said...

Such beautiful words, I felt as if I was standing with you barefooted in the snow. The fact that you could feel such peace and beauty this morning makes me sense you are truly healing...in your way and time. I had to call my Sister today because her son that passed away would have been 25 today. These special children that come and go too quick are never forgotten in the hearts of their Mothers and also the many others that loved them. Thank you for sharing such a tender moment.

Retired English Teacher said...

Thank you again for giving my thoughts and feelings words. You are so right when you said, some numbness is necessary to allow space for healing." Those words ring so true to my healing.

I have long been thankful for the initial feelings of denial and numbness. Those feelings protected me until I could deal with more truth.

deb colarossi said...

I love your soul.

Lilith said...

I don't think you ever do get over the loss of a child, but I think it does ease over time.

Take care woman.

Carol............. said...

Beautifully written. I could feel the numbing cold in my own feet reading your words and the numbness that can encase the soul at times.

Spring will return soon.

Barb said...

You perfectly capture the blank slate of a snowy landscape, Deb. There is peace in watching it snow and seeing the world transformed. I have been dealing with sadness also, as you know, but the rawness of a parent's grief is unimaginable. These words rang especially true for me: "absolute nothingness containing the promise of everything"

She Writes said...

I often feel deeply contemplative when it first begins to snow. Something about the silence of whiteness falling.

kario said...

I'm glad K came to you today in this way. And I'm glad you allowed her to come.

Love.

Carrie Link said...

This is you at your finest, Deb! Lovely!

Wanda said...

Often your words leave me without any. This is one of those times.

Donna said...

The thing I learn the most from you is just to BE...to absorb life in it's all...the good, the bad and the ugly. To find what peace and happiness you can in just living this life even when not easy. You are amazing and your very essence is just...neat! You give little life's lessons without even knowing it...thankyou.
(Thank you for your prayers for baby Caden...still testing)

Hold my hand: a social worker's blog said...

I'm your 100th follower...yay!!!!

Deb, thanks for stopping by my blog and for commenting on my story.

I'm looking forward to reading your posts. This certainly is a lovely place to visit! :-)

Doris

Aisling said...

What a beautiful poignant post. I'm so sorry for your loss, and so appreciate the wisdom you are sharing.

Thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog earlier. I will be back again. Your writing is very lyrical and calming.

Ann Best said...

Such a peaceful scene you've created! Beautiful. Snow can definitely make one feel contemplative, even peaceful.

I agree that one never does get over a loss of a child, or anyone who was very special and close. I've found this to be true in my own life as well. I feel an emotional connection with you, and always am happy to see your lovely face on my blog and read your comment!
Ann Best, Author @ Long Journey Home

Facing50Blog.com said...

As always you write so eloquently enhancing your post with an appropriate photograph and image.
A wonderful post.

Kathryn Grace said...

I always enjoy reading the comments to your posts. Your words help so many of us, inform us, encourage us.

This post is elegant in its softness, its beauty, the grief it acknowledges, the comfort it shares. I feel as if I have spent a day in the enshrouding quiet of a gentle snow, yet only minutes have passed. I am blessed.

May you be blessed three-fold as you have blessed each one of us.