Springing Forward

Wednesday, March 20, is the Vernal equinox, the official start of spring in the northern hemisphere marking the time when nature’s life cycle begins anew.

crocus and oak leaves on early spring ground

Embrace the promise of the spring to come but don’t ignore the present

For many of us, it’s a time for renewed or fresh intentions to get in better shape, lose a few pounds, make plans for the summer. It’s time to finish the projects around the house that we put on the list back when it seemed winter would stretch on relentlessly, and we had nothing but time.

Now we have to hustle to get them done so that we can tackle the springtime projects.

It never ends, does it? The busyness.

Springing Forward Through the Busyness

We feel energized by the warmer weather and longer days. More creative. Perhaps even, more determined. For me, spring is always about the garden. My Lenten Roses bloomed gloriously a few weeks ago, right on schedule. The other day the roses started pushing out new growth, and every day a few more crocus push out from behind the oak leaves that cover the ground.

It’s a conundrum, do I rake now so I can enjoy the full beauty of the crocus, or wait a few more weeks until the oak finally sheds the rest of its leaves? Most years the decision is made easier by the reality that one raking and fertilizing is the best I can manage. In the meantime, I really must finish thinning the English ivy that grows vigorously under the diminutive Laceleaf Japanese maple. Left unchecked, the ivy will find its way into the garage by late summer.

It never ends, does it? The busyness.

I’ve been particularly busy the past few weeks at the computer, with plenty left yet to do. Work this year has brought its own kind of spring in the form of new goals and with it, the planning and brainstorming and waiting for a previously unseen future to begin to unfold.

It never ends, does it? The busyness.

Springing Forward Through the Sorrow

Perhaps I am eager for spring because winter brought its share of sorrows within our family and among our many friends. Perhaps in spring we can shed our sorrows and meet life with renewed vigor.

The burden of sorrow always slows us down, as though we’re moving in slow motion even as the rest of the world continues apace. But the slowed pace also serves as a reminder of life’s preciousness and its unpredictability. I see those sorrows as a gentle warning that there’s more to life than springing from one action item to the next. That we should not spend so much time looking toward the future that we forget to look at the present. That the only time we’re without a to-do list is when we’re without a pulse.

It never ends, does it. Until it does.

Life Is Honest, Open and True: Spring renews our energy for life. We shrug off the lethargy of the dark winter and run towards the sunshine and warmth and the promise for a brighter future. Even as we make a commitment to our future, we need to remain committed to our present. Today, stop pulling the weeds long enough to smell the roses.

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