A happy thought
“It was a happy thought to bring
To the dark season’s frost and rime
This painted memory of spring,
This dream of summertime.” – John Greenleaf Whittier
Last Thursday, the evening before Jeff’s burial ceremony at Arlington, I opened our front door to family arriving from out of town and found a package on my doorstep. It must have been delivered late, because I had been out earlier that afternoon and did not see it. In the rush of arrivals and plans for a very full day the next day, I tucked the package away to enjoy later when I had a few moments to myself. I knew there would be a time when I really needed it.
Even though I did not open it immediately, I was delighted to get it. It was from one of the “regulars” in our little blog family, who lives far away and often sends me thoughtful surprises in the mail. (No, it wasn’t from Boomdee, but good guess!) The day it arrived had been remarkably warm, almost hot, but the next day the cold set in and even brought flurries of snow that began during the outdoor moments of Jeff’s ceremony, as the flag was lifted from the casket and folded, the gun salutes were fired and the bugler played taps.
The cold weather remained for days, as if nature was in mourning with me, and a fairly heavy snowfall came on Monday. The overcast skies and the dread of facing my first springtime without Jeff had me feeling quite blue. Having caught up with many of the tasks that were awaiting me when the last of the visitors left that morning, I knew that it was time to open the lovely package I had gotten nearly one week ago. The time since it had arrived now seems a blur, but I did think how remarkable it was that it arrived in the warm weather and was now being opened on a cold, snowy night, having been sent from a place that was doubtlessly far colder than it is here right now. (No, it wasn’t from Susan, but that’s a good guess too!)
Of course, it did not disappoint. Each delightful gift had a thoughtful note attached or tucked inside, and the one pictured above, nestled under the colorful tissue at the bottom of the box, was the last gift I saw. It was perfect– absolutely what I needed on this cold and gloomy night. The little handwritten note with it was even more perfect than the gift itself. Just when I needed it most, a cheerful splash of color and a ray of hope. I felt so blessed and grateful.
So how are you today? How is the weather as you are reading this? If it’s a sunny day, I hope you will have time to enjoy it, spending a few minutes outdoors and maybe even planting some primroses or pansies. But if it’s gloomy day, overcast by literal clouds or the burdensome cares and worries that can render even the best weather powerless to lift your spirits, I wish for you an unexpected surprise that warms your heart with the knowledge that you are not alone, no matter how much it sometimes seems so. May your memories of spring and dreams of summer be painted with all your favorite colors!
P.S. Thanks to all of you who have left comments — I have read and enjoyed them, and hope to respond very soon. I appreciate your patience!