We have been fortunate not to have to deal with the Winter weather that a lot of people in the South have had to deal with over the past couple of weeks. Huntsville is nestled in the Tennessee Valley which seems to temper weather patterns. I’m sure a meteorologist could explain it but all I know is that most extremes in bad weather, jump over us.
But two nights ago, around 7:15 PM, it started snowing. And it stuck. And an hour later, it had covered everything in glorious white. The Buddy Man was thrilled. It was the most snow he can remember seeing. The last snow storm with accumulation of 4+ inches occurred when he was just four months. He (and, OK, I did too) kept going to the window to watch it fall.
As I prepared him for bed, he couldn’t stop talking about waking up and playing in all that snow. I got in bed myself, looking at my weather app, my anxiety escalating at the thought of the Hubby traveling to and from work in this wintry mix. Rain was coming which would inevitably turn to ice. Would he be able to make it home?
And then I had another disquieting thought; we wouldn’t wake up to the glorious winter wonderland that was happening outside our very door. It would be different, if not gone completely.
I called to the Buddy Man and told him to get up and to put on warm clothes and his boots. We were going outside, right then, to play in the snow. Yes, it was past his bedtime, and yes, his excitement would cause him (and consequently me also) to stay up and he (and consequently me also) would be no good for educating at home in the morning, but, I realized, we would never get this chance again.
We went out and built a column of snow, which in his imagination became a snow castle. We pelted each other with snowballs and got each other in the face, and ears, and hair more than a few times. I tried to capture it all in a photograph: his glee, his excitement, the thrill of being outside in the dark, playing in the snow. I tried to capture the moment my heart soared away from my anxiety of earlier that evening as well as the anxiety that has encased me these past 12 months. He shrieked and laughed and I laughed as I haven’t laughed in a very very long time.
Needless to say, no photo or video could capture it. At best, what I have is a reminder of that glorious night. I will hold that in my heart as long as I live and can only hope that my son will always remember the night he and his mommy played in the snow.