I need to write today. Simply have to. And having said that, I mean written it, I have absolutely no idea what I will write about as I sit here and type.
I can’t figure out what words are looking to come out. What message there is that needs to be unlocked today, the one that will work its way out through my therapeutic moving across these keys. I only know that a few paragraphs from now, it will have revealed itself.
This process, the hands to keys to head to heart that I experience, is something that is so much a part of me that if I have too long a stretch away from the keys, I feel lost.
And so, to find myself with a little chunk of time today and a blank white page in front of me, I am energized already at the thought of what words may come. At what I may read later that will give me a clue about what I needed to express.
I think it has to do with springtime and what that represents for me. Growing up in New York, spring meant the end of harsh winters, and the beginning of sunshine. Sweet, sweet sunshine. My mom would strip down the drapes and put up new ones. She’d change the bed linens from heavy to lightweight and it seemed that every corner of the house was touched with a duster or a mop.
There was a sense of getting organized, of getting ready for something that came at this time of year. Windows were opened and washed with Windex and newspaper. Mom said using newspaper was a secret trick my grandmother had taught her and I have to admit, even though I am not sure it works better than paper towels, I do it that way too. Closets and drawers were aired out and heavy winter clothes were packed up to be stored. The house smelled like lemon Pledge and Murphy’s oil soap and there was something about those aromas that made me feel good. Something that said that all was safe and right and good in the world.
Flower boxes in front of the house were filled and colors spilled from their sides, bringing a sense of loveliness that was so critical, so necessary after the long winter. Watching mom planting them always made me smile. I was thinking just now that I wish I’d helped her back then, but I just didn’t like the feel of the dirt on my hands when I tried to once or twice. Now, I wish mom was here to help me get motivated to plant some flowers in front of my house. I actually love to put my hands in the dirt these days. There is something freeing about it. I wish she was here to help me pick out spring drapes too. I really do. And even to see that I use the newspaper trick. I think she would like that.
I loved springtime routines when I was a little girl. I think it was the feeling of clearing out and starting fresh that the season brought with it. Of growth and re-birth all around me. I still love it.
Sitting here as memories come to me beyond childhood ones, I think of what spring meant to me as I got older. It meant taking my son’s bicycle out of the garage and finally being able to ride together in beautiful weather. It meant going to his baseball games night after night and heading out for pizza afterwards. It meant I got to be the Easter bunny over and over for him and that I could swipe some of the chocolate marshmallow eggs and jelly beans from the basket when he wasn’t looking. The basket that looked an awful lot like the ones my own Easter bunny had left for me many years before.
I don’t really know how any of what I’ve just written has to do with sitting here today. I guess I just needed to think about spring rituals and to remember… I think I will go and get out the lemon Pledge and the vacuum. I feel energized to do so now. And after that, maybe I’ll go and get a few things to put in a basket to send to my son so that it will be there in time for Easter. Now that he is grown, it won’t be long before he will be making one for his own children. But for now, I can mail one to him. He knows I get a kick out of that stuff, and I’m actually pretty sure he likes it too. Maybe I’ll even fill a little basket with some chocolate to keep at home too. I’ll put it on a nicely polished table, just like mom’s used to be.