Welcome to Spring!

Spring Flowers

Spring Flowers

The rain fell more aggressively this morning than I expected from the gentle patter on the skylights before dawn.  I enjoyed the life lesson as I walked to work; a lesson about raincoats, freewill, and adulthood.   It was delivered wrapped in a memory, a delightful enough gift, on a spring morning.

I walked in the rain, frustratedly fussing with the hood of my raincoat, and irritably noting with some amusement that somehow the designer had failed to understand that a hood might be more effective if it were to stay up over my head when a breeze comes up.  Each time I tugged it back up, something nagged my consciousness until a wee crystal clear memory of actual childhood reached my awareness – to my great delight (I don’t have many).  I recalled a rainy morning, leaving home – specifically the glass vestibule of an apartment building – to walk to the bus stop to go to school.  My hood fell down, I pulled it up. Down. Up. Down. Up. Then the clear recollection of my thought in the moment; a sort of ‘When I’m a grown up, I will not wear a hood at all!’ kind of thought.  I grinned to myself at the recollection of petulant childhood frustration with a world that seemed then to seriously favor ‘grown ups’.  Being ‘a grown up’ myself now, more or less, I understand that the reality of it has often failed to live up to my childhood expectations…and I walked on considering that.

When I was younger than adult, I lived with a fantasy that someday, when I was ‘a grown up’, I would live my life based on my own will alone. I would choose my apartment, my job, my friends, my life style – I would live entirely based on my own values, my own desires, and my free will to choose.  It sounded beyond exciting – it also sounded like the only possible outcome.  Adulthood and I did reach some sort of wary meeting place, at about 18 years for me, and my ‘menu’ of choices seemed immediately to be unexpectedly limited by my resources, my opportunities, choices I had already made, and a whole assortment of ‘have to’ ‘supposed to’ and ‘need to’ things that I didn’t anticipate being obstacles.  The whole mess was frustrating and vaguely disappointing.  This morning, though, it flooded back to me with the Spring rain – the promise inherent in becoming adult, the potential in the very real opportunities of choice, itself, and of free will.  I laughed out loud, and let the breeze blow back my hood. I grinned into the dawn through rain spattered glasses, and my stride relaxed and became natural and free; and I gave myself the further gift – and respect – of choosing to live up to my own values and pleasures, and disregarded the rain, the hood, and any sense of propriety or decorum regarding ‘keeping my clothes nice’.  My walk to work stopped being an internal list of reminders about work, life,  or concern about damp socks, damp hair, or rain drops tickling the back of my neck, and became the pure joy of experiencing a beautiful, rainy, spring morning – and here I am.  For the moment, whole and happy and content to be human, content to be female, and content to be ‘a grown up’, all of which seems quite simple and natural having remembered that now that I’m an adult, I do get to live my life based on my own values, on my own choices, and that those choices are only limited by the limits I acknowledge and accept for myself.  A nice reminder – some internal spring cleaning, of a sort, and a welcome re-assessment of small frustrations in life.

So, here I am on a Wednesday, on the Vernal Equinox; damp socks, damp hair, and for the time being an unbeatably buoyant feeling of contentment with this fragile vessel, and it’s precious contents.

Welcome to Spring, indeed.