Winter had been harsh—brutally cold and often dismal. The shortened periods of light accentuated the heaviness that had crept in my life. I’d recovered from breast cancer and, just recently, turned sixty. How did I get that old? Were my opportunities waning? My work slowed. Life felt dormant.
Here in the north, where snows often reach as much as 200 inches a year, winter's retreat and the reappearance of longer periods of light are seen as an event. As the last remaining piles of snow melted, the sun and warming weather beckoned me outdoors to tend my many flower beds around the house. When that first really warm day occurred, I happily went out to rake.