Spring has always been my favorite time of year. As a child, it was most likely because I have a Spring birthday. However, as I've gotten older, I so greatly appreciate that seasonal change from a long, gray winter, into the fresh, clean, warmth of Spring.

This time of transition is symbolic, not only for the earth, but also for our lives. The earth needs a period of dormancy, of rest. During the long winter months, it is quiet, buried beneath blankets of snow. The earth uses winter to renew itself, to become ready for the growing season ahead.

Our lives go through seasons. There are times when we are dormant, restful, and at peace. Our minds and bodies need times where we are as quiet and as still as a long winter day. The times of rest prepare us for the times where we are in an active state of growth and change. Rest gives us the necessary energy for growth.

Last Spring was very special. My husband and I celebrated Easter and my birthday and his birthday and our daughter's college graduation and the new life of this season. We planted seeds, walked the dogs, drove around in our convertible, hiked in the woods, set up bird feeders, and sat on the deck in the warmth of Spring sunshine. I cherish in my heart only good memories of the last Spring he and I shared together.

And now, after a long grieving winter, I stand before Easter, birthdays, and new season without him by my side. It has been 9 months since his death. Two seasons, autumn and winter, without him. And now, I step forth into this beautiful, life-filled Springtime without my soul mate beside me. But I do so with hope. I've lived in the Midwest my entire life. I know Spring always follows winter. I know winter does not last forever. I know a broken heart will heal. I know there is life to come. As I compose this blog entry on Good Friday and look forward to celebrating the Easter resurrection, my faith tells me that death is not the end of the story. The storms of winter do not last forever. Spring will always come. Death is not the last word. New life comes forth from a grieving heart. Hope come forth from darkness. Life emerges from an empty tomb.

Whenever I would be overly concerned or worried about something, my husband would always say, "Just trust, Honey. Everything will be alright." His pithy bit of wisdom meant for us to trust in the strength of our marriage, trust in one another as husband and wife, trust in God who was part of our life together, trust that Spring always follows winter. And he was correct. Even in the most difficult of times, things would eventually be alright. Even in his death, even through the darkest seasons of grief, everything has been alright. Hope, life, and Spring continue to come.

Perhaps I have a simplistic approach to life, but this philosophy has carried me through many winters of my heart and into the new life of Spring. It gives me peace. It alleviates worry. It pushes back darkness and fills me with hope. In enables me to keep stepping boldly into another day and another season.

So, I conclude my simple message with a simple song. Good 'ol Bob Marley often joins my husband's voice, assuring me, over and over again, that everything WILL be alright!





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