Will It Be an Early Spring?

Copyrighted by Lorna Tedder. Originally published in Third Degree of Separation.

Changes are coming. Huge changes in my life. I feel them in the same way my parents feel the coming rain in their joints. I feel them  in the same way an animal skitters to safer ground when they feel an earthquake coming. This morning, I walked outside, heading to work, and felt Spring in the air. I saw both robins and bluebirds, the latter being quite rare here. The realization of coming Spring surprised me. I thought it was still Winter. I hadn’t realized how quickly the struggles of Autumn had passed and that it was already the

The Long-Awaited Honest-to-God Secret to Being Happy

31st day of January.

Of course, it’s Imbolc, or Brigid’s Day, which has been Americanized as Groundhog Day. The legend of the groundhog seeing its shadow and six more weeks of winter goes back to the pagan festival and the idea that if Imbolc is sunny and fair, the wintry season is not yet done, but if it’s cloudy and gray, then Spring is around the corner.

I’ve felt Spring in my bones for weeks now. Even in the dead of  Winter, I’ve felt it coming. I looked at the basket of gourds in the dining room last night and, attuned to the seasons as I am, I turned up my nose at them. I was craving flowers instead. Seeds. Planting. Blooming. The beginnings of what will be a new harvest.

I look to the trends around me and try to guess where the changes will occur this Spring. I look as well to where my attachments  are  that  aren’t  so  permanent  as  I  might  have thought or even, at one time, hoped. Though I’m very competent at my career, it no longer  holds  any strong draw for me. The only attachment left of it is in the security of the paycheck and the health insurance. Who I am is no longer  contingent upon my employment. I no longer define myself by my job title—that in itself is a big change over the past few years.

So, I’m told repeatedly, changes in my job are coming. Whether that’s a promotion, a new office, or a thumbed nose at the establishment, I don’t know. But a change in that area of my life feels very right.

I feel a change coming in my health, too, though I can’t mark it. I think it’s a good change, though. I’m down 18 pounds from where I was a year ago, and fluctuate a pound or two on either side of that number (depending on whether I’ve spent the weekend with my mom’s chocolate “guilt” cakes that I dare not noteat or she’ll feel bad), but I’ve held it steady as I’ve slowly dropped a couple of sizes. It’s not that I’m more aware of what I eat now, but that I deserve to have a healthy lunch instead of grabbing whatever’s quick out of a vending machine because I have to work through lunch. And getting out and exercising is all about making more time to be good to myself and keep my “rental unit” running smoothly so I can do all the things I want.

And, too, I feel a change coming in my love life. This change is different from the sense of having a partner again and whether or not I “need” someone. This new sense is about falling in love, not slipping into need. That’s different, too. I ac- knowledge that hey, you know, I think I like the idea of being in love with someone who’s in love with me. I don’t require it for my existence, there’s not necessarily any practical or biological reason to have it, and if I want companionship, I have friends and I have family and I have a dog. But this is totally impractical and unnecessary to  my  physical existence on this plane. The willingness to say, yes, I’ll be open to what the Gods send to me and I’ll do this again because I like being in love, even with all the risks.

I get a glimmer of it. That warm feeling of just wanting to be with one person in particular and the can’t-wait-to-see-you hopes behind it. The  serenity that comes with being together, being in each other’s presence and everything being okay, being soothing to our jagged edges, being a walk in the park, whereas being separate is full of yearning and anxiety and all the  fears and doubts associated with the outside world. It’s communication  with just a look of knowing, of adoring, of admiring, of wanting peace and pleasure and warmth for each other and both doing whatever’s possible to help make it happen. It’s talking all night and then at other times, never saying a word in moments when frantic kisses will do  or  when just lying in each other’s arms is more than enough. It’s racing after our own dreams and running back excitedly to tell each other about  them before bolting off again, sometimes together and sometimes by our ourselves. It’s finding refuge from the troubles around you in each other and, even in the sanctuary of the relationship, knowing that uneasy moments will pass between and misunderstandings will occur and insecurities and ego will cause friction, and yet, there’s commitment to growing both independently and together and individualizing fully and supporting each other emotionally and spiritually. It’s looking over the landscape that was once seared to the ground and all destroyed and now seeing the seeds have been planted and the flowers grow lushly and the buds are beginning to open and the garden that was once destroyed has been rebuilt, replanted, and now can be rejoiced in.

And I think it’s coming again. I don’t have a man in my life right now, but something’s in the air. I also don’t have a new job lined up and I have no idea if I’ll spend the next six months fighting off another allergy-induced infection as I did last year or training for a marathon. I don’t know what’s out there and what the Gods will offer me. But I do know that big things are coming, unnerving and unsettling things, but they’ll take  me to a whole new life or a whole new way of looking at life—I’m not sure which or both. And I do know that Spring is coming.

Whether it’ll be an early Spring or six more weeks of

Winter, I’ll have to wait and see.


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