Children, who have had it with snow and cold, and can still do something about it. Warmer climates will take them away, won't they? They will.
Last week, our oldest granddaughter requested that I remove my "Shimmer Lights" shampoo from the bathtub, lest she mistake it for hers while showering and her hair will turn white. Small and simple request, easily fulfilled. An eight year old's perspective on life that could easily have slipped by into my book of treasured memories were it taken only at face value. Shampoo that turns your hair white? Oh, were it that easy. That, my dear, takes years and time and sometimes, it takes pain, lots of it. And courage. And sorrow. And hard work. And worry. Worry, too. Sleepless nights, tossing and turning-worry. And grief. Huge responsibilities. Loss. Loss turns the blackest of hair into the whitest of white. Amazing, how quickly that happens, those years, that time, those winters.
I wear my white hair as my own badge of courage. I never intend to cover it up. I'm proud of the winters I've weathered, just as my own mother was. She earned her stripes. Pain, loss, worry and courage. Beyond words. I just came upon a few photos, some of the last taken of her, with my father on his 90th birthday. Two full heads of hair, white as snow, surrounding proud and valiant faces, smiling at each other. It was in October of that year, the new season approaching. One that would be harsh, followed by two more seasons, each not wanting to be the one that separated them from each other forever. Summer claimed that dubious distinction. The warmth can also leave us cold and shivering.
I'm starting to brace myself. Surely, the news will come any day now. There's a house that is too small, there are children who are getting bigger, more space, a garage, less snow. This extended cold season seems to be punishing me for what, I am not sure but I will survive and my lights will continue to shimmer and maybe tomorrow, we'll be back to where we should be. Maybe?