Thursday, April 10, 2014

True Spring

On April 2nd, I woke to Chip's little hand rubbing my naked back in the right-left-right-left arc of a windshield wiper. I opened my eyes to a thin ribbon of sunshine between the curtains and knew: true spring, and that knowledge was sprinkled with surprise. I realized that, in some small way, I'd doubted the return of spring. I'd doubted.

It had to do with spring's (and even summer's?) being dangled--over and over again--in front of me and then snatched back. In delight, I'd sprung into "spring" several times only to experience the retreat of warm light. I know you know, and I wonder: is it out of wisdom that old men sit and talk about the weather? A fail-proof topic of conversation, the weather.

In writing about the weather, I've written something we all understand. But also? I've written analogy and even parable.

After enough "just kiddings," the hope slides right out of me, and perhaps without my even realizing it. Hope doesn't often spill from us like the gush of soda from a knocked-over glass, after all, but like the trickle of sand through a pin-pricked sack. Job understood this and writes the water-wear of rocks in the same sentence as the destruction of hope (14:19). It takes time to destroy hope.

Over time and after many disappointments, I come to doubt the return of a thing like spring...or the healing of a long-suffering loved one...or (like Charlie Brown) the integrity of a person like Lucy van Pelt. I'll wager you're just the same.

An unknown person wrote: "Everything will be okay in the end. If it's not okay, it's not the end," and Cicero (echoing the author of Ecclesiastes 9:4) wrote: "While there's life, there's hope." I'm writing, just now, as someone awakening to many wonders I'd doubted. I'm a person of faith; I am. I want to be, also, a person of hope: a person who recognizes and stops the trickle of any and all good things from my being.


  1. ah i love playing at the creek....smiles
    and i hear you...disappointment wears you dont...and its hard to hold up
    at times...its good we don't have to carry it all ourselves.

  2. Oh my, Brandee. This is superb - right here, truth, well-written. Thank you! I want to be a person of hope, too. (Your babies are gorgeous. Just sayin')

  3. I love this piece, Brandee. It's stuck with me ever since I read it. Spring: knowledge sprinkled with surprise...that very same idea had been rolling around for me, and then you put these words and images to it. And yeah -- it's all exactly as you say. Thank you. And that photo of you on the sidebar is beautiful! Gorgeous, lady.

  4. Brandee,

    I don't know how it's been so long since I've been here, but it's good to be back. :) Yes, those delays that bring fledgling doubts, wonders, and questions... I'm glad God is big enough to handle all our questions and feelings.

    Love that photo of the water around your daughter's foot. It bubbles viscosity!

    Nice to see you again,
    Jennifer Dougan

  5. I'm with you on this one again......disappointment, the whole thing......spring brings a bit of newness and renewed hope. Love to you and happy spring.