When a couple hits a rough patch, one of the first questions the counselors will ask is, “What did you notice about your partner that first attracted you?” The question has several aims. The obvious aim is to start the discussion in a positive place, back when love was in the air (or in the bed, somewhere). A less obvious aim is to explore who is projecting what onto whom, so everybody can take responsibility for their share of the disappointments and problems.
I’m having a rough patch with winter. One gray day follows another, the temperatures are stinkin’ cold when they ought to be moderating. The most recent ice storm left my nice big pine trees in shambles. Some plan-destroying winter storm always lurks in the forecast somewhere, and worst of all, IT’S TAX SEASON.
And yet, I know winter will soon fade. That’s the beauty of a temperate climate. Just when I think I’ve fallen out of love with a season, it starts to slip away. The days are longer, the animals are shedding, Valentine’s Day leads to St. Patrick’s Day… In Shakespeare’s words, it’s time to “love that well, which thou must leave ere long” (Sonnet 73.)
Then too, it’s not winter’s fault I haven’t written much new material lately. It’s not winter’s fault that accounting is one of my least favorite things to do, it’s not winter’s fault I’m traveling next week and haven’t quite figured out the logistics. That’s all on me, not the season.
NO BUGS. I love that there are no bugs in winter.
NO STINKIN’ HEAT. It gets so hot where I live that my computer needs it’s own little AC, the florescent lights in the kitchen give up, and the poor dogs plaster themselves to the cool of the floor for hours.
THE BEAUTY OF A FRESH SNOW FALL.
THE FUZZY BEASTS.
THE JOY OF THE HOLIDAYS AND THE RELAXED WORK SCHEDULE THEY BRING.
THE SENSE OF LOOKING FORWARD TO THE NEW YEAR.
THE STARRY, STARRY NIGHTS, THE BRILLIANT SUNSETS.
Has looking on the bright side ever yielded big insights for you? Does it make the present more bearable, or is it an aggravating exercise in trying to minimize your legitimate misery? And a simpler question: What do you look forward to on the hard days?
To one commenter, I’ll send a basket of Godiva Chocolate goodies.