I discovered recently that I am madly in love with spring. Where I grew up gray slowly becomes green and winter rains soften to spring rains. This does have its advantages. When my mom calls to tell me she’s pruning her roses I have to bite back a bitter comment about the 3 foot mounds of snow covering our landscape.
I used to love the snow. The 2 inches we would get occasionally in Tacoma were reason to rejoice – school cancelled and a day of play ended with cocoa and coziness.
But that wasn’t REAL winter. Real winter is different. Real winter is the White Witch’s rule for five months – no sign of life; everything white and barren and dead. I look out my kitchen window, trying to remember the color from last summer, and I will my perennials not to be defeated by the subzero temperatures.
And then, miracle of miracles, the snow melts and, before anything else shudders to life, tiny yellow buds appear on our two forsythia bushes. I cannot explain the thrill of recognizing those first, brave signs of life. Everything else is still happily asleep but here they are, telling me not to despair. Aslan is on the move and spring is coming. Winter has been defeated again.
Easter was our twins’ first birthday. We stood at their grave that evening, along with my sweet brothers and sister-in-law. The light was soft and the cemetery was quiet and still, just like it always is. I kept my eyes on their stone and struggled to believe that Jesus will come back. Really? This grip of death, this sting, will one day be unloosed?
I hate Death. I hate to feel that it has had its way with me. That its power will shape me as long as I live. I don’t belong to Death. I belong to Life. Jesus says so.
I laid branches from our forsythia bushes by the grave. Their buds had burst into yellow flowers. I whispered to my babies that they would live again, that they belonged to Life. Aslan is on the move.