There is nothing quite so magical as the beginning of spring.
It somehow breathes new life into my soul while returning me to old, familiar, and very comforting places in my heart.
Oh, how I go back...
Today my journey down memory's road began when the fresh, warm scent of early morning wafted through my open window and gently nudged me out of a deep sleep. My eyes barely open, I noticed my crisp, white curtain ruffling in the slight breeze, I heard birds singing softly...muffled voices...must have been kids walking to school...
At once I was, in my mind's eye, transported back to a warm, spring morning at my childhood home -- a yellow/gold brick three-bedroom ranch on Buckeye Crescent in my hometown of Madeira, Ohio. All the windows were open, the drapes slightly flapping in the breeze. I was six years old and I could see my mom in her usual morning routine -- perched on the edge of our old orange chair in our living room, smoking a Salem cigarette and taking swigs from an eight-ounce glass bottle of Coca Cola (OK, so she was no June Cleaver, but she loved me) -- watching The Today Show on our black and white TV.
I wanted to linger there, feel once more the comfort of having my dear and now long-ago departed mother near. But I forced my brain back to real time and pushed myself out of bed. Though a day off from work, I told myself I needed to get going, get things done...
Instead, I decided to treat myself to a walk on a nearby wooded trail. As I hiked along, my face bathed in sunlight, I was overcome by what I call "that summer feeling." Suddenly I was eight years old and back at the local swim club with my best friend, Valli. School was out, summer stretched far and wide ahead of us, and life was teeming with endless possibilities.
A chatty squirrel snapped me out of my nostalgic trance, and I eventually found my way back to my porch swing where I sat for some time, rocking, contemplating where I had been and where I might be headed. And I was smiling. It was as if I had just returned from a far-away and enthralling vacation.
Granted, I had been gone only a short while and had not strayed very far. But for the first time in a long while, my heart was light, my soul comforted, and life felt full of endless possibilities.
Indeed, there is nothing quite so magical as the beginning of spring.