#45: On How to Survive the Winter

#45: On How to Survive the Winter

It should come as no surprise that I don’t exactly LOVE winter. I don’t exactly hate it, but it’s not my favorite time of year.

I love spring: Spring Break, flowers, happy colors, Easter, new spring clothes, warmer weather, LIGHT!!!!

I love summer: Summer Vacation!!!! Freedom!!! Time to play, relax, hang out by the pool, go on vacation, laugh, and  wear shorts! LIGHT!!!!

I enjoy fall: crisp clean air, less heat, new fall clothes, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, fading light – but still, there is LIGHT!!!

And then there is winter. January is simply a very long month. And though I’ve pretty much made my peace with New Year’s Eve, it is a holiday that tends to, shall we say, “highlight” the fact that I am single. And then there is the slow journey to Valentine’s Day. Then there is March. March is another long month in the teaching world, as there are no days off for teachers in this month. After the Presidents Day holiday there is nothing but one teacher work day until spring break.

I’ve been through a few catastrophes in the winter. My family’s house burned down on Valentine’s Day in 1992 and a couple of years ago, on my Mom’s birthday in January, I came home to find my house flooded thanks to a burst pipe in my next door neighbor’s unit.

And winter. Well, winter is cold and dark. Now those of you who live in parts of the country where there are true winters can feel free to mock me. I know I deserve it, and I salute you. I would not survive. I pretty much reach my threshold getting through a Georgia winter.

But I don’t want to waste three months of the year feeling depressed, so I have, over the years, put a few things in place to learn to appreciate winter.

1)Embrace warm winter foods. Cook soups, make homemade hot chocolate, bake bread, and drink tea.

2) Enjoy cozy evenings by the fire with quilts, fun movies and needlework.

3) Keep exercising. It’s hard to be sad when doing Zumba.

4) Plan fun things to do that require getting out of the house and being with people.

5) Work on creative projects. The best way for me to ward off depression is to create beautiful things with my hands.

6) Plan a trip. Last year at the beginning of the school year, I bought plane tickets for a trip to
California in February. It made all the difference in the world last winter to have the trip
to look forward to and to plan for, not to mention, the fun of the actual trip. I did the same thing this year and my excitement is increasing as the time for the trip approaches.

I still have winter days when I get a little depressed and wonder if spring is ever going to return, but learning to be intentional about enjoying winter has certainly made all the difference.

How do YOU survive the winter?

Amy- Bradley Hand


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