Today I woke up early with the first bits of morning light streaming through my windows. I wasn’t totally awake. Instead, I was seeing reality, but still in somewhat of a dream state. My three year old daughter was next to me, curled into a ball with her knees in my back. I just laid there, soaking in the moment.
And then, something happened. Something that both filled me with joy and sadness.
I heard birds singing. One loud cardinal, who must have been perched close to my window. He sang and sang and called to all of his friends and family. He was telling the world, better than any weatherman can, that spring is near. The cold, hard winter is almost over, and spring is on its way. Happiness!
When I move to Oregon, I won’t have a cold, hard winter. The climate is much more temperate, the birds don’t leave. It’s something I have been really looking forward to…I hate winter. And yet.
Without it, spring isn’t as powerful.
Life has more meaning because of death. Seeing flowers and trees and animals come to life every spring fills me with some sort of inexplicable feeling. Something like nostalgia, but better.
My happiness comes with something else. I am sad. Moving means no dramatic change of seasons. Don’t get me wrong, I still hate enduring winter. But when life comes from death, it speaks to a deep part of humanity. We are created to see this! Maybe because I live in Nebraska, where there isn’t anything but a scattering of hills on endless plains, I notice it in the seasons. When I move to Oregon where there are mountains, forests, and an ocean, my Creator will speak to me in other dramatic ways. I am sure of that. I still feel a bit of sadness, realizing that this could be the last time I hear the first call of spring. Just as I do whenever I drive through the country and see the wide fields and the outstretched sky. The wild prairie is unique, and I will be leaving it behind.
Somehow, feeling this sadness, acknowledging it…isn’t a bad thing. I like it. It’s good. I’m glad I have the foresight to take in these moments and let finality in them fill me. This quote pretty much sums up this kind of sadness.
“I love old things. They make me feel sad.”
“What’s good about sad?”
“Sad is happy for deep people.”
-Sally Sparrow, Series 3, Episode 10 Doctor Who