There’s a calmness in the winter
the stillness and the silence
bundling up under several layers
just to go watch the dog run around outside
and come back inside to a piping hot cup of hot chocolate
hands like icicles, wrapped around the mug, warming.
December can feel like a separate world from reality,
everyone bustling to get ready for the holidays
while maneuvering around the first real snowstorm of the season
and I sit here drinking my hot chocolate
and the world stops for a minute
and I know,
if only for a moment,
will be okay.
I had gone bitter, I realized, lying on my floor at 7 pm. Lights off, music playing, thoughts ruminating like a bad storm. I tend to relate my feelings to the weather, and the weather affects my mood. We have that kind of relationship. And today it was windy, cold, and dark. I felt it deep inside my chest.
I spent a long time forcing myself to fall in love with boys who weren’t worth it while hating myself. Under the impression that having someone else love me equated to me loving myself. If he could do it, I wouldn’t have to. Maybe if someone else loved me, I could understand what there was to love about myself. But that’s not how it works.
And I spent so much time in half-assed relationships with people who only wanted to hurt me, and I don’t blame them. I should. And I did for a while. But I realized they hated themselves just as much as I hated myself, and I understood why they stayed for so long.
And I sit here, laying on the floor in my darkened room, and I realize I’ve gone bitter. I’ve always kind of been bitter, but I got just bad enough sleep this week to acknowledge my bitterness. And the music, its own agenda about breakups, have me thinking back on my exes and all the damage they did.
And I don’t blame anyone for my bitterness. I don’t even blame myself. I know it’s just today. It’s just the weather and it’s just my lack of sleep. But there’s moments when I’m not so sure.
And I don’t think anyone could make me feel as free as when I’m walking down the suburb streets I know so well, mid-summer, the wind at my back, headphones in playing my favorite song.
I don’t think anyone could make me feel the relief of the sudden chill in the air after months of overheating, finally wearing my favorite jacket, going for a walk and seeing mushrooms after it rained.
I don’t think anyone could make me feel as safe as looking out my window in the morning after the first snowfall of winter, the warmth from my blankets contrasting with the cold of the windowsill.
I don’t think anyone could make me feel as hopeful as the first day in spring when it starts to warm up, after months of bundled up, freezing temperatures and I can sit outside and work on this or that.
And I don’t mind. Because the seasons could never remember my favorite color or the way I like my coffee. The seasons couldn’t hold my hand or give me their jacket when I get cold. I fell in love with the seasons, and they come and go and I fall in love with each change, but they could never make me feel as wanted as a text saying, “this made me think of you.”
A blanket of white
coats the ground outside.
Safely tucked away inside,
warm under a blanket
with my morning coffee,
I watch as the snow
falls from the trees
in the gentle wind.
And as I sit here I know
life goes on.
Fresh frost coats the ground,
people dressed in coats and scarves
shiver and speed-walk to their cars.
Take one step outside,
any grogginess felt before disappears
behind the crisp December air.
Some heat up their car and go back inside,
some didn’t plan that far ahead
and instead shiver on their way to work,
and by the time they get to work
they refuse to leave the furnace they’ve created.
Two workers greet each other with a friendly,
“It’s too cold,”
while the other retorts,
“It’s too early!”
They both take sips of their hot drink,
sigh, and walk into their workplace.
The retail ship is decorated for Christmas,
but no workers have any Christmas cheer left.
The winter snow told me to relax,
things will work out,
just give it time.
And if it’s not okay,
have a cup of tea
and a warm blanket.
Spring will be here
and you’ll be good again.
Winters are for hibernating,
growing and healing.
But then why,
I ask myself,
do I always break down
when winter comes around?
I do miss it sometimes.
I miss the closeness,
I miss the warm feeling-
I’ve been so cold lately.
I fear, as I always do
that I won’t feel it again.
I’m destined for a life
of freezing, bitter winds.
But I’m tired of killing myself
over people who aren’t
worth a scratch or a scrape.
So, I’ll risk the bitter winds,
because I won’t freeze over
and someday I’ll find
someone worth dying for.
The chill in the air,
the calm winter snow,
tells me I’ll be okay.
And if not today,
The leafless trees
and the desolate dirt trail,
now shrouded in white
and slowing down travelers.
Life stops in the winter
and lets me breathe.
I’d never met a morning I liked
until I met a northern winter morning.
The comfortable silence,
the perpetual, still air.
I glance outside
and I regain a part of me I once lost.
The wind was harsh, cutting into our faces like daggers, leaving us red in the face and nearly frostbitten. The dead of winter never felt so dead as we trudged down the road to the gas station to pick up hot chocolate mix. It was ironic, the heat wasn’t kicking on at our apartment, so we nearly got frostbite trying to buy something that’ll warm us up. If we make it, it’ll be a story to tell, but for now I just want to get out of the snow. The snowshoes we dug out of the closet were sinking into the snow more than usual.
“I think it’s time to get new snowshoes.” I yelled through the tunnel of wind.
“What?” Eva yelled back, squinting to see me through the snow still falling.
“Need new snowshoes!” I said simply.
“Yap!” Eva said, or that’s what it sounded like. She said something else, but it was muffled behind the snow.
I paused, turned around, and squinting said, “Huh?”
“Never mind, go.” She put her hands on my shoulders and turned me around, patting my shoulders before letting me go.
Though the cold tried to break through my spirit and render me useless, having Eva with me to make this two-mile trek kept me warm.
Snow has been falling for almost an hour now. I awoke to see a dusting, but now it’s nearly up to my knees. I’ve got nowhere to be, though, and I’m watching comfortably from the warmth of my blanket and a cup of tea. Music plays softly from my speaker; I serenely watch the snow fall. Hours pass and the snow settles at waist level. Sighing, I appreciate this week off from work I’ve taken.