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Archive for March, 2010

Glass Half Full

I am a glass half empty kind of girl.  I like to say it was a choice I made as a child in order to be pleasantly surprised more often than horribly disappointed but I believe there is a chance it is just in my nature.  My sister, on the other hand, is a glass half full kind of girl.  She always sees the bright side of a situation.  I sometimes call her a Pollyanna, because of her chipper outlook on life.  At least, that is what I called her until last year when her heart was shattered into a million pieces by the love of her life and husband of 11 years.

For the past year, we have spoken almost every day, sometimes three and four times a day and I have heard how a man who had promised to love her for the rest of her life was now finding new ways each day to dig the dagger a little deeper.  I have watched as he took her business, her home and even her friends.  And worse still, I have watched as she blamed herself for the breakup of her marriage and the turmoil that had become her life.

My baby sister has always been that to me.  She has always been my baby sister, the one I want to protect from all harm.  So, when the smoke started to clear, I was one of the ones who walked beside her as she gained her footing and began to pick up the pieces of her heart.  I learned in the first few months of her pain that, as much as I wanted to, I couldn’t control this situation for her.  She had to go through the steps and take control of her life and I have watched her do just that.

As a wife, I am terrified by her situation. As a wife, I wonder how I would handle the same thing and pray that I will never be faced with it.  But as a sister, I marvel at her resolve and I wonder how it is that my little sister, my baby sister, has the fortitude that she has.

It has been a year of bitter dispute with a man she thought loved her, of watching everything she has worked for got down the drain and yet she said to me this weekend that things are looking up.  That she is excited about the future.  That the worse has come and gone and she has survived it and knowing that, she realizes now that she can handle anything.

Watching her, I have come to realize something similar.  I have come to look at each day and notice the differences today as compared to yesterday.  Because of my little sister’s survival through this year, I suddenly see what a difference a day, week, month or year makes.  Last year, I worried every day about my sister but a year later I am in awe of her and the lessons she has taught me along the way.  I still don’t know what tomorrow holds but because of my sister, I now know that it doesn’t matter.  Each day brings a new breath, new life and new opportunities.  So I will admit, this glass half full thing is not so bad.

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I know it is cliché but I love spring.  I love the feeling of hope every new flower brings.  I love knowing there is warmth to look forward to.  I find joy in the spring.

Every fall I mourn the leaves.  They start to change colors and the dread starts to set in.  It isn’t just because I hate raking and bagging leaves.  I just hate winter.  And as the leaves change I know that winter is inevitable.  I hate everything about winter.  I hate the bare trees.  I hate being cold. I hate the short days.  For as long as I can remember, I have always hated winter.  But this winter has been the worse.   We have had well over three feet of snow since December.  The kids have missed ten days of school and the school system still can’t decide how they will make it up.  Every single person in this house has had at least two rounds of colds, sore throats, ear infections and general yuckiness.  And to top all of that off three of the five of us have had injuries that have kept us from running and making it through the hard winter days the way we like to.  In other words this winter has just plain sucked.

But today that is changing.  It is March 1st and though I am sitting here with a cotton ball shoved in my ear and antibiotics and pain medicine at the ready, I am declaring winter to be over.  This is not random and it has nothing to do with the date.  I officially declare winter over each year at the first site of flowers and this morning as I was busy being thankful for the little bit of ground I can see through the melting snow I realized that there are two little crocus flowers poking their heads through my front garden.  So, it is official, today winter is over.  Spring is coming.  Maybe it is still 40 degrees outside.  Maybe I still have to wear hat and gloves when I go for a run.  Maybe we will even get more snow.  But none of that matters because starting today I can count the flowers.

Already I have gone out into the garden a little further and noticed the shoots coming up for my daffodils.  I have noticed promising little buds on the hydrangea and I even detected a slightly brighter color to the ground cover that will eventually be full of white flowers.  So, maybe it is cliché.  Maybe the new beginning thing is a bit PollyAnna, but I don’t care because today winter is over.  Today is a good day.

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