snowflake1The last couple of days have been pretty cold here in Florida. Sure, you can laugh if you want to. My brother did when I whined about mentioned the drop in temperature. I can’t blame him. He used to live in Wyoming where they have real cold. None of this man-made stuff. But still, when sleet is a five year anomaly and you’re more adept at hurricane watches than salting sidewalks, 35 degrees is bound to feel startlingly brisk.

The trouble isn’t really with the cold and wet itself though. For the first couple of hours we were actually sort of delighted, like a little kid discovering unexpected treasure. The problem is, there’s so much of it.  After the first few minutes, most of us realized that this kind of stuff is what we fled the great white north to get away from. Its been a bit disconcerting to have the snowmen follow us home.

Meanwhile, California is struggling in the grip of a mega-drought and would love to have whatever precipitation we could send her way. Instead of having too much cold wet stuff, they have too much dry. Sadly, there isn’t a cost effective way to send our wet weather over to help California out.

Now, where was I going with all that?


Image courtesy of Cornell University

Oh yes, relativity.

There are always going to be things we’ve accumulated, but have no use for. And unlike the weather, we can do something about this accumulation. Fluffy sweaters, surfboards, ski-suits, goggles, zoot-suited hornswaggles.  Whatever it is, if we don’t need it or want it, we shouldn’t hang on to it, especially when someone else would love to have it. There are even websites dedicated to getting rid of such things.

Its too bad there isn’t a website to jettison spiritual and emotional cast-offs. Like a snowbound front walk, shoveling out from under that kind of weight takes real work.

It takes forgiving, both yourself and others. It means counting your blessings in the light instead of cursing the dark. It means choosing to see the best in others, even though you’ve experienced the worst.  It might help to remember that regardless of what you carry, someone else would trade you burdens in a heartbeat. Oddly, this is not because their load is heavier, but because its theirs, and therefore more painful to them. Like so much else, sorrow is relative, but it never feels that way to the one who is hurting.

So which do you have more of? Material goods you can’t use, or emotional S.W.A.G. that you don’t want? Either way, dump it and make room for something better.



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