Gray January

 I don't like January.  I'm not particularly fond of February either.  March has its ups and downs, but March brings forth spring; even if it doesn't always feel like it.

The cold months have always been difficult for me.  It's not so much the cold; it's the gray. (Although I confess that I am NOT a fan of cold; is it any wonder that I take hot bathes at the end of the day and there hurry off to bed in warm jammies?  Who even wants to get out of bed when it is dark and cold?  Burrowing down under the covers just might be a national pastime!) January and February are to me, the grayest months of the year and I am not a fan of gray.  I like the white of the snow when it falls from a gray sky, but all too soon that that fluffy white turns to gray.  Is there anything more depressing than gray skies and gray ground?  Most of the trees are barren and gray; even those that keep their green needles seem to have a grayish tint.

I know the days are getting longer and I rejoice in that, but it always seems to me that the darkness comes more quickly than the light.  It doesn't help that now that Epiphany has come and gone, my family (and many people) have taken down their holiday decorations.  Decorations that were filled with light.  (As well as hope and joy.)

After the initial celebration of the New Year, I've settled back into the cold reality of life as we currently know it.  We may be in a new year, but we are still stuck in a pandemic and the numbers keep climbing.  This new strain is sneaky and extremely contagious, which has caused us to slide back into remoteness.  (School for the past week WAS in person for my son, but only a half day so there was no eating and removing of masks.)  "My" thrift shop where I volunteer closed early due to the increase in cases and many churches have returned to virtual only; and not just because of Covid, but because of weather concerns.

Who wants to go out when it is cold and icy?  I certainly don't and I miss the walks I could take in the warmer months.  I have difficulty seeing the beauty in the dank gray, even if I could go out.

The good news, and no matter how dark things may seem we can always look for the good and find it, is that there are only 70 days till spring.  (As I write this that is).  And while 70 is a big number, every day that goes by we get a little closer; we get a little lighter.  Time moves forward, the gray WILL turn to green.  The chill will pass...the warmth of the sun will fill the skies again.

It's okay to feel gray inside when it is gray outside.  As tough as it may be, I need to remember (we all need to remember) that the gray is NOT permanent.  Nothing is.  Cold melts into warmth. The gray skies will be pushed away by blue and the yellow sun will shine.  The gray slush will melt away and the green will push out of the ground and the earth will be filled with color again.



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