An Awakening of the Season

Yesterday marked five months since Norah’s sudden and unexpected death.

I didn’t cry.

To be honest, although I was very aware of the approaching date, I wasn’t “aware” of yesterday until a few hours in to my day, when I realized I hadn’t cried. Realizations like that cause a vision – like one in a movie – of moving really fast through a noisy, bright tunnel. A blue tunnel. Always blue. I’ve learned that these “visions” occur for me when my brain and my heart catch up with one another and attempt to realign on this journey together.

I sat in my thoughts, in my grief, silently and without tears. Ironically, it felt good to sit in a painful place (where I have no choice to leave) but without the pain of outward mourning.

I looked out my office window to see ice falling from the sky; snow was in the forecast. Winter is my favorite season so I wasn’t upset by this, but I was surprised. While this type weather is not uncommon here, it’s unseasonable. Like death. Not uncommon, but always unseasonable. My thoughts stopped there and I resumed my day. Norah felt so close.

This morning, as I drove the girls to school, we talked about how much we all love winter. How they’d make snow angels and watch a Christmas movie and snuggle with us this weekend; how this would have been Norah’s first time seeing snow.

Then we came upon this:

I have been on this road countless times, multiple times a day, but today it looked different. The road was empty, but so beautiful. The snow surrounding it looked almost as if it was protecting the path, sheltering it from anything else that could come in from the sides. I was very aware of the curve in the distance, as it appeared almost intimidating today. But I felt a sense of unexpected peace. So much so, that I stopped the car in its tracks to take this picture, and to sit for a few seconds in the beauty.

Peace. Peace that Winter came early. A new understanding of why I have always loved this season so much, why all four of us love this season- it’s the season when Norah was born; early.

Was God always preparing us for this season? To allow us to find beauty in the cold? To find peace in the desolate roads? To find comfort in the surrounding snow? To feel soothed by the barren trees? To approach the curves ahead with faith and grace? To find Norah?

Winter is her season. She’s the only one in our household who was born in the winter, the rest of us were born in the summer; the beginning, the middle, and the end of summer, to be exact. And while our births open and close the season of Norah’s death, her birth opens and closes a season of peace, light, induced warmth, comfort, gratitude, family, and love.

I’ve been awakened to understand that life is like that fast, loud, blue tunnel. Everyone is flying through it, not taking time to let their brain and their heart realign, and enjoy the peace found in a “season” of awakening.

But when you’re faced with that scary curve, one you’ve never even thought about before, you’ll be shaken in to an awakening so powerful that you’ll likely never be able to go back.

There is a journey amongst all of us; a deeper meaning. A time to slow down.

Kindness.

Appreciation.

Humanity.

Humility.

Refocus.

Respect.

Sitting in our life – wherever it may be.

Really listening – to yourself and to others.

Letting go of the small stuff.

Embracing what’s right in front of you.

Acceptance.

Do all of it before a tragedy, an unseasonable death, forces your awakening.

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