I am only at the beginning of recognizing the incredible benefits of social media. I am a skeptic, you see, but I am slowly opening up to the idea that correspondence via the world wide web is likely as important to us today as sending a post was to those dwelling in the 19th century.
A friend of mine posted a few days back that the deep of winter is a challenge for her. I loved hearing about a snippet of her life! So, though at first I was thinking, ‘oh, how tragic!’ I soon began to appreciate the beauty of struggling through winter. It is so common to the human experience in these parts of the world, and I love that. I love how it becomes imperative to not only enjoy the small…possibly minute, moments of excitement, but to also recognize one’s desire for what is to come. For some reason, this really struck at my heart. I’ve been pondering this in class, while driving, at work, wherever.This morning, I popped in a load of laundry. My least favorite thing to do EVER. Seriously. I would rather muck out a barn stall. To save myself, I literally put everything that is dirty into one load of cold water with a bit of BioKleen [my favorite detergent which does not seem to cause headaches, and is also pleasant to work with]. Usually I add a lavender bag from Trader Joes [which reminds me, I need to get down to the cities so I can pick up another package of these, they are fabulous!] and some free&clear sheets to the dryer. [At least laundry becomes bearable when I don’t get headaches or nausea from the smell!]
Last summer, I discovered that I actually looked forward to laundry day because I would have the opportunity to hang the clothes on the line outside our little house. I loved seeing the colors sway in the breeze and I loved feeling the warmth of the clothes as I folded then created little stacks on my bed after they were dry. Something about the entire experience was so nostalgic and slow and present, it even created a sense of dread when winter began to approach. Really…what are clean clothes without the sun-dried folds and aroma? Come to think of it…why do we even wear clothes?…hence the dread.
But today, with this incredibly beautiful and bright sunlight through the window, a small bit of morning exercise and 2 chocolate chip pancakes later, I might have gotten a bit carried away. Because not only did I let the washer do an extra spin cycle, but I shook out my clothes, hung my unmentionables and socks on my curtain rods, then I actually strapped up the mukluks, threw on a funny looking hat and climbed our hip-high snow bank just so I could toss my scrubs and towels on the lines. I have an ear to ear grin. I think that the extra jolt I needed in this deep winter day, was to enjoy the smallness and freshness of what is to come: those lazy-hazy-crazy days of summer! Seeing with my own eyes, the softness of the breeze just outside my window, and feeling the sun, trapped in the fibers of my clothes.
It is even more of a relief to realize that I do not have to wait to be married, till I have kids strapped to my waist or until the cows come home to begin living the good and slow life. I can do it now. Just where I am. Just where the Lord has me.
So in these deep days of winter, I find myself getting excited over hanging my laundry in 23 degrees Fahrenheit. I let myself get overly IMpatient to receive my Taproot magazine [which thankfully came today as I almost ordered 12 Kinfolk magazines just for the heck of it]! I find a specialness in buying [for only 3.5 bucks] one of the most intriguing movies I have ever seen [Never Let Me Go] and then forcing myself to wait for the right time to watch it. I find that cooking spaghetti [using onions from last summer’s garden] and eating it slowly has a very deep-healing property. And I find, most of all, that it is the sweetness of discovering these unexpected, fore-tellings of summer, that help bring me through these days. Praise God for the sweet and little blessings. And for the written word. On screen……but mostly off. :)