Valentine’s Day gift ideas


“Mother’s here!” Mother Nature, that is. OK, so it’s cold. Yes, very cold. I know. As good as my body and mind have been feeling recently, the low temperatures have me isolating again. Not good. As strong as I’ve become these last few years, I still battle with my brain over leaving my apartment. No pity. I’m not playing “victim” because I’m alone. If you’re two, though, grab the other’s hand–well, throw on several layers first–and the house keys and walk out the door.

Once outside, continue holding hands as you commiserate over how bloody cold it is. Then appreciate the sharp, fresh intake of oxygen into your lungs and the inevitable exhale that takes with it the musty, dusty, shallow-breathy air that filled them inside. Feel the uptick in alertness as your brain, skin, and eyes absorb the new surroundings.

You’ll feel your pace quickening in an attempt to keep warm or get home faster. Remind yourselves that home’s waiting for you and resist the urge to hurry. Notice. Look up. Look down. Listen. So much to see and hear if you give it half a chance. Like picking out a certain instrument’s sound in a symphony, it’s purpose, and how the music would suffer without it.

Stillness creates its own music, too. You know what I mean…an otherworldly peace that reigns after a heavy snowfall silences a city. I love those moments. Alone, but in a good way. Bundled head to toe and cradled in a sheltering layer of endless snowflakes. The crunchy sound of foot steps, seeing your breath–isn’t that something–your mouth a tiny chimney. Each others red cheeks and drippy noses.

Head back when you’re ready. It may be later rather than sooner. Don’t anticipate the warmth and shelter that will greet you. Appreciate where you are, who you’re with, and that your frosty foray outside together is a gift. For others, it’s home.

Hope is a green cathedral with mossy kneelers.

Lack of communication is unhealthy.

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