3/04/2010

Embedded gardens

Soon the flowers and plants will begin to grow again. Imagine those seeds down there in the ground, bathed in the exodus of the snow and ice. At times, this winter seems to have been kept on hold in order to torture us. I can't remember a time when I actually liked the cold until I go back and read through journals.

I am counting on this spring. I know it will come. Previous winters have always come with temporary vacations in temperature. When I lived in Canada, I remember my dad bragging to me that it was 70 degrees one January afternoon in Virginia when it was -2 degrees celsius at my house in Calgary.

The past three months have felt they did that year I lived in New England, where there was no respite at all from the plunging of the jet stream. I'm still bracing for another snowstorm, not quite convinced that we're out of the drifts yet. Surely, there's one more storm left in this young whippersnapper of a winter.

In any case, even if it comes, I know warmer days are ahead. Last night, I realized we're two weeks away from the equinox. This morning I woke up at 6:30, and it was partially light out there. The birds were chirping. I woke up happy for the first time in a while. All was right with the world.

It's crucial to learn how to store up that sort of feeling for those times when you need to be reminded of the glory of the world.

For instance, every time I run, I try to capture at least one snapshot to remind myself later in life of what it feels like when I am not able to run.

Every time I say goodbye to my children, I imagine it may be the last time.

Is that overly maudlin? Perhaps. But, perhaps not.

This winter has been very fertile for my depressive tendencies. I keep them in check by taking inventory of all the good things that have come before, in the hopes that more will follow.

That includes those maudlin moments when I'm at the bottom of the world. Was it Oscar Wilde who said something about being in the gutter, looking up at the stars? Perhaps. My hero Black Francis once sang about the white moon being hot, but the other side not. In any case, I'm keenly aware of the duality of any situation, the seemingly infinite number of perspectives that can spring forth from any event, any instance.

Truth be told, this has not been my best year to date. I've been going through a very sad time of my life, and I pretty much keep it to myself. I suffer from depression, and at times it's absolutely crippling.

Or, I should say, other people suffer from my depression. I seem to embrace this condition as part of my identity, part of what makes me human. I'm a writer, a creative thinker who wants nothing more than to come up with new ways to describe things. I want to take moments and make them eternal. This includes the maudlin, which are all more than likely to be more interesting than the happy ones.

I take comfort from knowing that I am constantly planting seeds, and some of them grow into some fantastic things. This spring shall be magnificent.

All of the things I currently perceive as bad shall in time be revealed to be blessings. This is the way. The world turns, revolves around the sun, and gives us plenty to write about if we're willing to pay attention.


No comments: