A Life of Violets

“The violets in the mountains have broken the rocks.” – Tennessee Williams

This week ushers in spring – finally. To say this winter has been a crappy one in the Midwest is certainly an understatement. On my run today, I noticed a handful of flowers beginning to peek through the ugly, hard ground. Although I am all too aware that this week’s forecast again calls for snow, I was at least a little encouraged that God hasn’t forgotten about us. It made me want to buy some fresh flowers. The hopeful me sometimes beats the cynical me in the long dual for my soul.

For years, I preferred autumn and winter to the spring. I never thought of it as more than anything but a dislike for the coming summer heat, until now. Autumn and winter signify the end of things. For the years that I was in an unhappy marriage, and slowly killing myself with a self-defeating attitude and boxes of Ding-Dongs, I think I was actually seeking the end of those things that made me unhappy. I enjoyed knowing that one more year of it all was about to be over. And after my divorce, my own rebirth was long, tiring, and often painful. Broke, tired and having given up on love, I longed for the sun on my face. I found the above quote from Tennessee Williams five years after my divorce. I held onto it for dear life, knowing in my heart that my spring was near.

It was the spring of 2010, seven years out from my divorce, when I finally emerged from my long winter. I graduated with my teaching degree on May 10, after many long years of very hard work and very little sleep. The very next day, as if fate was just waiting for me to accomplish my own personal success, Logan’s track coach invited me to meet him at Starbucks. In the following weeks, I came to admire him, desire him, and love him deeply. I still do.

Now, each spring I find hope in the sun that shines after a rainfall. I find tremendous beauty in the color and the smell of the beautiful flowers in my yard. I can’t wait to get out and run, to be on the boat, to lay in my hammock, and to grill something. The unhealthy winter of my discontent is long over and love, the sunshine, and the flowering of the Earth, have all broken the mountains of my past, and life is very sweet today.

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