Aaaah Winter. How I’ve looked forward to your chilly nights with warm blankets and smoky fireplaces, hot chocolate and the welcome of a toasty house on a wintry evening.
How I’ve craved the permission your cold gives to stay inside and hibernate. How your calm days allow me to recharge from the frenzied activity of the more temperate months.
But it appears I may have been idealizing you a bit. Because now that you’ve arrived, you have brought calls from the school nurse to come and get whichever kid is sick that day. You have brought rotating stuffy noses, sore throats, hacking coughs, stomach viruses and ear infections.
You have also provided us with the inevitable loss of every sweatshirt and jacket my children have and the daily repeated refrain, “Did you bring your jacket home? No? That’s the third one. It’s all we’ve got! What are you going to wear tomorrow? Aaargh.”
Which is followed by the dreaded trek to the school’s lost and found, which upon first glance appears to be a sea of navy blue, a room filled with hundreds of school uniform hoodies and fleeces that are all exactly the same. Where you must take a deep breath and dive in and painstakingly search every single one in vain for your last name written in faded and smudged sharpie.
Winter, I also must have forgotten the almost magnetic allure of a cozy bed on a dark and cold school morning, when getting the kids to relinquish their blankets and get up and dressed is as difficult as asking them to play together for an hour without fighting.
And I’ve also forgotten what it’s like when the kids resist going outside because it’s “freezing” and they’re still somewhat sick so they stay inside for hours and hours watching way too much TV, playing more electronics than I’ll admit to and bickering and complaining of boredom until I want to throw them both out into the frigid weather. Which of course I eventually do, because it’s Atlanta not Alaska and It’s not that cold. They are, after all, perfectly capable of surviving the elements with a coat.
Oh Winter, how I’ve idealized you. What was I thinking?
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