I remember the grammar school days of the teacher changing the bulletin board, replacing frosty the snow man with an image of the sun. I’d help with the boarders I had always had a thing for precision and the boarders always guaranteed that. Most of the time we would address the seasons changing by writing something or changing the classroom to accommodate the light of the sun. Spring was coming and I’d imagine how it would feel to not wear a coat and be forced to put on gloves and a hat that would make me sweat because I was bundled so tight (thanks mom). The warm weather has a way of converging your thoughts of cold and lonely to warm and inviting. As the years would go on I’d always cling to those feelings of having something bright to look forward to. The clocks go up and so does the anticipation, will we have an early peak of summer or will we be stuck in the misery of winter. Keep in mind that it’s 4am as I write this from my bed where I’ll be for the rest of the day due to a winter storm taking place on the second day of Spring. Emotions swirl and I think about the countless Easter outfit hunts my mom would take me on forcing me to acknowledge that spring was coming. Pollen present and music loud you could always tell that everyone else loved the idea of warmth. Getting to be outside more is all that I could think of, knowing that Spring is only a preview to a movie most of us love entitled Summer! How could you not feel good about breathing in fresh air that pushes the winter blues out of your heart and mind.
Think about how many things change with the seasons, our minds, body and heart all feel the change in one way or another. Some say that most relationships are formed on the Winter’s horizon and broken apart on the Summer’s approach. According to Mental Health America’s website about 5% of the US population experiences seasonal depression during the winter months. I stop to think that most of these people have to live in Northeastern part of the country as the constant snow storms and below zero temperatures are present now more than ever. Spring couldn’t come soon enough to remove the depressed and moody thoughts from our thoughts. Looking forward to the time change we assume that life will immediately change with the rising temperatures. The gym seems easier to get to with the thought of wearing less and being seen more. The beach trips fill our thoughts as we ready ourselves to enter back into the world willingly with positive thoughts brought on by some great weather. Myself, I never thought of the seasons as an attribute to my thoughts, ideas or suggestions. Sure, I’ve grown to despise the cold weather and my want for being outside does increase more as the days get warmer but what if I lived in Miami or Costa Rica? Would I be focusing on Spring or would I just be happy all year based on living in a place where it stays warm? What makes us play into the standardized thinking of seasons determining how we feel about our days? I can tell you that I looked forward to being in the classroom when the bulletin board would change, it reminded me that I have something to look forward to. My thoughts would change into me wanting to play outside more and make friends. Fantasizing about where I’d go whether it was to the park to run or the pool to swim I could be free in the Spring time. Freedom meant everything to me as a kid since my life consisted of being told what to do.
As we gear up for yet another change in the season think about how you are changing and why? Maybe a position you want to apply for or a goal you think you have to wait to reach. Although the winter still feels present for some of us depending upon your area code, channel the energy and inspiration from happy moments during these time. Reflecting on holiday celebrations or outside activities (sledding, skiing) can influence our thinking in a positive way. What did you enjoy most during these times? Battling things like seasonal depression, relationships ending or complete isolation can hinder your growth that may be necessary to your year. Should you have to wait for the calendar to tell you that you may need to exercise more or that you needed to smile? Most times we allow social constructs or even culture standards to formulate how and when we move. Depending on how far you are from the equator should not dictate when you change your boarders on your life’s bulletin board. Today, our weather remains unpredictable as ever and we’re forced to live our lives around what it feels like outside but remember your internal feelings are solely up to you. For all of you reading this while looking outside at cold, blizzard like weather cheer up and work on something that will make your Spring/Summer experience that much better.
Vashon Wade 2018