I am tired of winter. Never thought I’d ever hear myself say that one.
Winter, specifically this time of the year, has become my favorite over the past ten years or so. Since I started working in a farm-related business who has their busiest season in the fall, just like our family farm. Then we get into multiple birthdays around Christmas and New Years, the holidays themselves, and it all translates into stress. The farm has year-end book-keeping to do, and tax stuff has to be compiled and given to the preparer in January, early February, because farmers don’t have until April 15th to file taxes. Ours are due March 1.
I generally hold my breath until after mid-February and let out a big sigh when the bookwork is done, the holidays are done, the birthdays are done, and there are no outside tasks with a yard or garden – except to make sure the bird feeders are full and occasionally the sidewalk and porch gets a swipe with the shovel or broom. It becomes my down time. My time to curl in front of the fireplace and settle in with some intense World of Warcraft playing or messing around with some Facebook games. It is notoriously a time to cook up a pot of vegetable stew or chicken and noodles and get a pan of brownies in the oven and some bread baking in the machine. The smells and homey warmth of winter.
This winter my patterns have been shifted and I am unsteady and unsettled. I am not sleeping well. I am dreaming like the moon is full… and the moon hasn’t been full for quite some time. I am making a super-human attempt to be good about my diabetes and as such have adjusted my diet to be ‘healthy’… so the heavy starches and sugars and general yumminess of the typical winter fare has been given up. The snow has been oppressive. In winters past I looked forward to huge storms and not needing to go anywhere. I could sit at home by the fireplace, cozy in the knowledge that all the kids lived where they could get where they needed to be and if I really, really had to go somewhere that Hubs’ and the snowplow truck would be able to get me there.
This winter I worry about my mother, forty miles away and yet it seems like a million… the snow and ice prohibiting trips through the countryside where the winds are blowing the almost every few days snowstorms into drifts and black-ice patches that I am not equipped to handle. She’s doing fine… neighbor kids are walking the dog and scooping the walk and she’s still able to make short trips for groceries and to get to the senior center for some socialization. I worry about my daughters. One of who has to go into school and work and the other who has to not only get herself to work, but her son to and from school in another town. She wants to keep things as constant for him as she can, so she’s been driving him daily… and putting up with her ex-husband’s phobias about not being able to drive him to school now after he has had three car accidents this winter. So she has extra driving to go get her son from her ex’s when he spends the night there, several nights a week, then drive him to school and reverse the process after work.
The shop where my Hubs’ works on his equipment which is located at his mom’s had enough of the winter snows too. The roof caved in. In early December the roof started sagging so badly that Hubs wasn’t even able to open the large doors to get in and out and they were propping up what they could as best they could. Insurance covered it, but it just recently was repaired and it was a couple of months that the shop couldn’t be used. Not a good situation. Every day they predicted snow or ice the question was raised if this was going to be the final straw that was going to bring the roof down all-together.
The eastern coast has been hit with 3 foot snows… and the west coast has been hit with major rains causing mudslides. Here in the midwest we have had ice storms, snow, high winds causing white-outs and blizzard conditions. Power lines have come down making for outages – in some cases, for days. We’ve been lucky so far. When our power went out it was only for a day and we have a generator that ran the essentials. I feel for those who lost power and didn’t have such amenities. Right now we have about 18″ on the ground and just had a 10″ snow come through on Monday. The snow piles on the side of the gravel road are three times the height of my car… and we have another 5″ storm expected this weekend. The latest long-term forecast I heard said we are in a pattern that is going to continue for a few more weeks. A few more weeks.
I’m done. I give. If that’s what Old Man Winter was waiting for? He won.