In the dark house, the little one ran from room to room, waking up his siblings to let them know there is no school today. The ultimate oxymoron – no school, so wake up early.
But that’s the way with kids.
Last year, given our global-warming winter, my children lamented the dearth of snow days. All year, in fact, and through the hot summer, they talked about how unfair it was that not once did school close due to inclement winter weather.
Today began with icy streets and a few inches of snow. At 5 a.m., all the schools were closed – except ours.
But by 6 a.m., our school district had joined the hundreds whose doors will remain locked today. The kids are home. The sun still has not risen.
And the funniest thing is that by this afternoon, the snow will melt and the rain will begin. A snow day becomes a rain day and the kids will remain inside the house.
There is rarely an adult snow day, and I find that sad. We trudge along in our routines, going to work, going home, going to the gym, going to sleep. We give ourselves the gift of vacation, hitting beaches and cities and amusement parks to balance the drudgery energy of the workaday world.
What if it didn’t have to be that way?
What if we loved going to work because we did something everyday that made the world better, one phone call at a time, one task at a time? What if vacation ceased to matter because we embraced every moment and appreciated every day?
What if the difference between everyday and time off or holiday were so insignificant, we barely noticed, because all of life were wonderful?
It’s all about perspective. Life *can* be that way – if we choose to see it through that lens.
You see, we tell ourselves a story of separation when we really don’t have to. These are all external circumstances that carry with them no inherent good or bad – they just are. And how we look at it makes all the difference.
We can make a day about running around and crossing things off lists. Or we can look at it as a day to listen to the radio in the car and the mutterings of the children in the backseat and opt to stop for a quick ice cream cone or swirly-foamy coffee just because we pass a cool coffee shop.
It’s about choosing to see and believe rather than shutting our eyes tight against what IS.
Last Monday, the kids and I traipsed through downtown Ann Arbor on a day that barely hit 20 degrees Fahrenheit. We went in search of fairy doors. And while two of my three kids are old enough to no longer believe in fairies, all three plugged in and tuned up to the idea of imagination and discovery and what-if.
Even I did.
Maybe there really are fairies somewhere and maybe those doors open to a world so deep and far as to tweak the corners of our collective imagination.
Anything is possible, if you just believe. The kids are gathered around the kitchen table now and the sun still has not risen through the window. They are vibrant and alive and full of energy and optimism, just because school is closed for today.
I bet they’ll play pretend in the basement or paint pictures of sunrises or build a fort with couch cushions or dance to the latest Taylor Swift CD. Maybe all of the above.
And maybe they’ll roll in the snow because it’s there and it’s deep and it is the reason for our change of routine.
Tonight, I’ll tuck them back into their beds with the same kiss of love they get every night and maybe I’ll recount the moments of the day or maybe I won’t and we’ll just sink into sleep, content, quiet, at peace, because we know that the moments matter more than just about anything else.