Spring Hopes: Eternal

Here in Minnesota it’s what we wait for all winter long, it’s the light at the end of the cold, snowy tunnel.


According to the calendar it officially begins on March 20th, but in Minnesota, it begins on the first day people start wearing shorts. Which was this past week. So much pasty flesh! I even saw my first topless runner. I wanted to stop him and ask “my god, man, it’s 60 degrees. Wtf do you do when it’s 85 and humid? Pull the skin from your bones?”

Now, there is an unspoken agreement among most who live here: you must love spring. No substitutions, no exceptions. You have to not only love it, but it helps if you celebrate it and also you probably should mention it to every person you interact with throughout your day!


“Did ya see it’s gonna be close to 80 later this week?”


I get it! Really, I do. Winter is a harsh and defeating time for those of us who, for whatever reason, call this chunk of the United States home. 

We staunch the flow of despair and desolation with the holidays but round about the second week of January it really hits us. There is no escaping it. Well, obviously for many there is a way to escape- vacations, winter homes, indoor water parks, etc. But for a good number of us, we are stuck. Physically and mentally embedded in the frozen banks of ice and snow. 

This year I decided to try Dry January and in an effort to not botch that I kind of took my hermit game to a new level. Sub level, you could call it. I just stayed in, except to go sourcing for inventory a few times a week. I holed up and to be totally honest with you, it wasn’t so bad! I missed seeing human faces and sliding into restaurant booths and general socializing but also, I kind of didn’t. 

Taking that month to just reset was one of my better ideas. And I plan on trying it again next January. 

PS: the whole dry thing worked, too. Still is in fact. More on that later I guess.

But after January comes February! Which typically has 28 days but this year had approximately 208. 

This was the third snowiest winter in Minnesota, and we have been known to get blizzards in April so it’s not official yet. In fact it’s really supposed to hit 80 here this week but I see snowflakes on next week’s forecast. Again I wonder who lives here intentionally? 

Anyway. Spring hits fast and like the goober next door who is already using his gd leaf blower for an hour every morning, I am trying my best to summon up hope for a new season. A season without snow and windchill. But, it’s hard.

I know a lot of my hesitation to embrace all things spring can be traced to the whole body image/low self esteem stuff. The thought of coming out from under the layers of clothing and camouflage is daunting to those of us who cringe at the thought of hot sun and sweat. It’s getting better as I get older, it’s true when people say you just don’t give a shit about what others think and for real, it’s kinda glorious. Old habits die hard, though. So fretting about my freckled, spotted batwing arms being seen by others still occupies some brain space. 

It’s not just that, though. If you’ve read stuff here in the past, or had the rare opportunity to sit down and chat with me (LOL for real at that one) you know that I’m a tender hearted animal lover. I brake for squirrels and turtles and leaves that look like animals. It’s how I’ve always been and it seems to be intensifying as time marches on. 

Maybe it’s because of the aforementioned feeding of the backyard critters? I get bags of peanuts, seeds and corn a few times a month and throw them out back for the neighborhood animals. They come up to the patio door now and wait. Sometimes they crawl up the screen looking for the cuckoo human who calls them sweeties and babies. I started naming a few of them, and as insane as that sounds I’m not going to delete that. Batty is my favorite. This squirrel lost most of their tail at some point and they look like a chonky gray wombat running around out there. So that’s how Batty got their name. Regina is the mean one. 

With springtime comes animal activity and so many babies. And also increased sightings of smushed creatures on the roads. Roadkill has always made me sad but over the past couple of years it’s become a source of anxiety for me. I start to go down some morbid tunnels of thought, like “do they suffer” and “what if that one was still alive, maybe I should go see”. And then I get angry at people for hitting them. It’s a weird spiral thing and yes, it’s being discussed in therapy which helps, but it’s still hard. 

Don’t get me started on the turtles, okay? 

So yes, as a Minnesotan, I agree to be happy that spring has sprung. I concur that this winter was brutal and never ending and depressing. 

But I also have the toxic trait of being able to find the dark even in a daylight savings scenario. And so there is dread mixed in with the relief. As I eye up the t-shirts in the drawers, as I think about finding my capri length leggings, as I tromp through my new yard looking for signs of life where the ferns and hosta grow…I also brace myself for this season’s collateral damage. 

It’s a work in progress, folks. Maybe this spring will be different. Maybe I’ll be different! 

Hope really does spring eternal, doesn’t it?

Oooh Batty is outside. Gotta go. Until next time, friends ❤

1 comment:

  1. You need some sort of special shades that allow you to see the flowers and not the roadkill! Rose-colored blinders, as it were...


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