old mare in spring

20140415-184237.jpgI was caught in a downpour yesterday. It was a hard rain, pinging off me like pellets, stinging my face, drenching my t-shirt. The temperature fell so quickly that I wondered, briefly, if it was hail. But It didn’t matter. I was just so glad to be outside and moving, even in squishy socks.

I haven’t walked the trail in months, to say nothing of routine exercise. My body clearly knows the difference. I feel heavy, discouraged, inept. I’ve been feeling a lot like the old gray mare: she ain’t what she used to be. Winter doggone near got the best of her this year.

Cold and more cold. Ice and more ice. Snow and more snow. All sorts of challenges, across the family, cutting into our core of well-being. Days, weeks, months, with more to worry about than celebrate. So many setbacks; so much drag. I felt my glass-half-full tipping precariously toward empty more than once.

We were ever so thankful for sweet Sadie, shining like a bright light in the dark tunnel of February. In fact, if not for our grandchids, the winter might truly have been unbearable. Grandbabies are the finest therapy, the kind that seeps deep into your soul. My spirit is lifted by mere minutes in their presence.

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Now we’ve entered mud season. Gray-brown-beige ugliness. The snow is mostly gone but the ground was frozen so deep it cannot absorb the spring melt. Rivers, streams, and fields are full to overflowing. Water has been leaking into our basement for a solid week. The Hubs has been managing the influx with a small pump and great patience. Every time the forecast calls for more rain I wonder if we will lose the battle of the flow.

So, yesterday, feeling just a bit desperate to break out of my sluggish state, I gamed the forecast, hoping the rain wouldn’t push in earlier than predicted. Ignoring heavy clouds suggesting otherwise and warm wind whipping up a frenzy, I fled to the walking trail before dinner. It felt so good to move, even tenuously, on bum knee. The rain, when it hit, didn’t begin to dampen my spirits. Every ping against my skin reminded me that I was alive. I felt hopefulness being restored with each step. I may have a hitch in my git-along but I’m not done, yet.

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Today, more rain; then snow. The county declared a state of emergency from flooding. Temps are dropping steadily to well below freezing tonight. Robins huddle high in the cherry tree, feathers fluffed as a barrier to the cold. But I tasted spring yesterday on the raindrops. I smelled her in the wind. Hope lives on in this old mare.

Oh! May the God of green hope fill you up with joy, fill you up with peace, so that your believing lives, filled with the life-giving energy of the Holy Spirit, will brim over with hope! Romans 15:13

~ René Morley

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