Springtime has always been my mother’s favorite season. I never quite understood this as it was my least favorite season. It was “mud-season” and merely a necessary transition. It meant the fun, sledding and fireside days of winter were over, and there were too many days before the sun-drenched days of summer. It’s the time of year when the weather is so unpredictable, I have both my sandals and boots at the front door. So to say, I never had an affinity for Spring. That was until this Spring when the stay home order forced everything and everyone to slow down.
With each daybreak, I am serenaded by both familiar and new songs of birds returning to their summer homes happily searching for the perfect meal, mate and materials to feather their nests. We have watched neighborhood critters come out of hibernation to run amuck in our yard, zigzagging across our recently quieted street and skedaddling up and down the elm trees that line it. We’ve even befriended a squirrel, Rascal, who visits our porch for a daily helping of shelled peanuts.
The stay home order has also encouraged us to get outside to save our sanity, even on the worst of weather days. By spending countless hours outdoors, this is the first time I watched, every day, as mother nature woke from her winter slumber. It’s as if I had my own personal time lapse view of the process. I saw the first indication of buds on the trees in my yard finally burst into leaves. I watched as flowers broke the soil, stretching upwards towards the heavens. Everything was growing more with each passing day, including my new found love for the season.
I can even appreciate the rain and splashing in puddles that accompanies it. The nostalgic smell of the damp concrete reminds me of my own childhood and now I am cultivating the same nostalgia in my own children. And as it turns out, mud-season and worms are a favorite pastime.
Since the stay home order, the passing of time in our house has slowed down. There have been days that felt like a week and weeks that felt like a month. As time moves slowly forward through Spring, each day the sun is setting later and the breeze rustling through the new leaves is warmer indicating summer is on the horizon. These long days are literally getting longer. As a kid, I recall summer days that seemed to last forever. Even with the stay home order expiring this week, the slowness of our life habits and social distancing will give us a seemingly endless summer to look forward to.
Out of this I have grown to appreciate Spring as the season of new growth. Will it ever take the place of Fall in my heart? Probably not, but I have realized that each of the seasons offers something to truly treasure. I feel lucky to live in Minnesota where the seasons are dramatic. I have always taken time to stop and smell the flowers, but this is the first time I have ever slowed down enough to watch them grow. I suppose this is just one more instance of my momma knowing best after all.