It Has Happened


It has happened. Trees shivering their leaves off limbs and me shivering right along with them in empathy, sympathy—or just because I’m cold.

I hate cold. I hate being cold. I hate winter. I have always hated winter. There are very few things in this life I hate: fire ants, scorpions inside the house, winter, being cold.

All three of my winter memories are bad. When I was eleven, I took three cute brown and white puppies home without asking my parents first. I expected my parents to see the puppies, fall in love with them, and agree we could keep them. They didn’t. I had to take the puppies back, walking several miles through snow in canvas shoes with holes in them and wearing no gloves. I suffered severe frostbite on my toes and fingers. To this day my fingers quit working when it drops under 75F, and since it is nearly always cold here in Scotland, I spend part of my working day at the computer sitting on my hands to warm them up.

My second winter memory is worse; cutting, stacking, and carrying ice-crusted logs into the house for the fireplace—without gloves. Our family was too poor to buy gloves. Have I mentioned about my hands? Pain as severe as slowly freezing human limbs is hard to describe—and even harder to forget.

The third winter memory is taking Luke to cut a live Christmas tree when he was four. He had the necessary outfit: snow boots, snowsuit, coat, and gloves. Being a single mom supporting her child—I did not. This was deeper and colder snow—if that’s possible, and we were in it for a long time while Luke searched diligently for the perfect Christmas tree. Me—wearing canvas shoes and blue jeans—by the time Luke found his tree I would have gladly settled for a tin can and a twig.

The good thing about being a writer is that it’s okay to stay inside working—until life intrudes and forces you outside. Then it’s still winter, I’m still cold, I still hate the winter.

Psalm 74:17 says of God, “You have set all the borders of the earth; You have made summer and winter.”

Since God made winter, He has a purpose for it. That means my job is to be happy for those who enjoy the winter and follow the advice in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “In everything give thanks.”

So I am thankful. I am thankful that winter ends.


4 thoughts on “It Has Happened

  1. I am totally with you, Steph. My hatred of cold goes back to childhood too and walking home from school through the snow with inadequate clothes and shoes. I cried all the way, my toes and hands hurt so much. It becomes deeply entrenched in one’s psyche, doesn’t it? Yes, lets celebrate that others like it, even if we can’t!

  2. Thanks, Val. I’m so sorry for what you went through in childhood. I hate to hear that someone else was as miserable as I was. But let’s be glad for those who had better childhoods and appreciate winter. Some folks deliberately expose themselves to the cold to ice skate, ski, and snowboard. To each his own, I suppose. But I go to sleep at night dreaming about moving to Arizona, even though I’ve never been there (have driven through) and don’t know anyone there! Hope you find your summer place for part of the winter this year.

  3. Great post, Stephanie. I hate winter, too. For similar reasons, I imagine. Glad you’ll visit us soon–I can’t promise sun, although it’s likely, but I can predict little to no snow. (It snowed a little on December 8th last year, so I must be careful of absolute promises!

  4. Thanks, Les. We’ll take what we can get. I think you were in on the puppy fiasco too! I know we thought they were the cutest puppies in the world and we couldn’t live without them – but they weren’t Great Danes, so they didn’t get to stay.

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