I love this time of year, how spring creeps along methodically – green grass, check; dandelion flowers, check; high arcing sun, check – and then suddenly, a peach tree erupts pinkly, and it’s like the space shuttle has landed in our backyard. No one can sleep because the peach is blooming.
Actually, no one can sleep because it’s light out forever. Every night at 7:30 p.m., Dan closes our curtains, yawns dramatically and puts a curse on any neighborhood kid who dares to knock on the door to ask if Col and Rose want to come out and play stormtroopers.
We’re all infected with spring mania. Everything seems so shiny and new. I feel a little like Rip Van Winkle, like I’ve been sleeping for a very long time, or at least since November.
You can actually smell the fruit trees blooming all over town.
I want to throw a party for each new phase of spring, like: lilacs blooming now, everyone come over with a potluck dish. And just when the trees are at their peak of blooming, just when you can barely stand the exquisiteness, the wind blows, raining pink petals on green grass.
It’s at this change of seasons, which writer Gretel Ehrlich says, “deserves a separate name so the year might be divided eight ways instead of four,” where something tugs at me.
There’s something about being here, again, paused at the tippy top of the seasonal roller coaster, peering down at the free-fall of summer.
We’ve been cranked up the long, slow incline of spring, scattering lettuce seeds, ruminating over summer programs for the kids, marking the calendar with camping trips, knowing that soon summer will zoom on its own momentum. Fast. As it always does.
Everything is so familiar – sandals jumbled with snow boots in the mudroom like seasons colliding; me wondering if I have to actually sing to the carrots to get them to germinate; the kids’ limbs browning up – and yet, a whole year has passed.
I think it’s this passage of time that is most confounding to me as a mother, how slippery and incremental it is, how you can’t see it or touch it but it’s the chisel shaping your children’s lives every moment.
(The kids are gazing out the window at the soaring vultures)
Rose: I wish I was a bird.
Col: A vulture?
Col: Are you sure?
Rose: Yeah, Coley. Because then I’d fly over our house and wave down at you.
Col: If you were a vulture your ice cream would be dead deer meat and your fizzy water would be blood.
Reach Rachel Turiel at firstname.lastname@example.org.Visit her blog, 6512 and growing, on raising children, chickens and other messy, rewarding endeavors at 6,512 feet.