My thoughts wandered, fueled by cold and the discomfort of muscles that are rarely used screaming their displeasure at being exploited in the manner required by shoveling.
I remember being handed a shovel and instructions to go “do the front steps” of our house. We had a house with 14 concrete steps at that time. “Do the steps” was an hour at least of back breaking work. Should I mention that we lived in that house during the blizzard of ’78?
I had to go outside and shovel with my scaled-to-my-size shovel gifted to me for Christmas by mom and dad when I was four years old. Even though my midlife memory leaves something to be desired (reference I remember nothing by Nora Ephron), I swear, it’s true! I have a picture around here somewhere….
My parents stayed inside and smiled and waved at us kids while we kids were outside shoveling.
As it should be.
The 50 year old mom shouldn’t be outside shoveling while the 13 year old daughter is inside glued to her itouch.
Then I had another thought. When my mother was 50 years old, she couldn’t shovel. She was busy being diagnosed with a stage IV pelvic cancer of an uncertain type. She couldn’t shovel. She was busy dying.
Suddenly, I was very happy to be a 50 year old woman outside shoveling. A woman with 2 happy, healthy kids, married to the love of my life. A woman with a strong, healthy body for whom shoveling was not only possible, but beneficial cardiovascularly speaking. A woman with a house and yard that needed shoveling.
Wayne Dyer was right: “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”