Not even a week ago, my front yard was a fluffy, snowy wonderland of frozen joy. I reveled in its cold wetness, happily viewing my frigid kingdom from the warmth and safety of my house. And yes, there was hot chocolate and celebration throughout the land. And yet … There was sadness, too. Because I knew it couldn’t last. All good things must come to an end.
Yesterday was a gorgeous day, and it looks like today promises more of the same. Beautiful blue sky. Crisp temperatures, but not quite cold enough for a jacket. Sunshine. A gentle breeze. It seems that Spring, in all her glory, has arrived at last. Soon, there will be flowers. Lots of flowers.
And birds, too. They will hop busily around the yard, looking cheerful and self-important as they squabble amongst themselves for the choicest bits of food. I will hear them twittering their joy from the branches of the cherry tree in my front yard.
(Well, okay … Not this kind of bird. This is Larry. He lives in our local shoe repair shop. He doesn’t peck the ground for food or hop around anyone’s yard. But he will walk across the counter if you give him a peanut. Still, you get the idea: Birds. Songs. Spring. Happy-happy-joy-joy.)
All around me, people will emerge from their months-long winter hibernation. They will roll off the couch, where it seems they’ve been watching reality TV since time began. They will brush the crumbs from their sweat pants, curse the invention of elastic waistbands, and stand there, blinking in the sunshine. They will feel happy and warm, and they will wonder why they ever started watching television, in the first place. They will resolve to be better people … and to take up jogging. They might even go so far as to wave at their neighbors — a tenuous gesture that takes everyone by surprise. “What,” they will wonder, “am I thinking? What has gotten into me?”
But they won’t wonder for long. Because it’s Spring. And everyone is happy. Everyone twirls around like fairy princesses, shedding droplets of happiness around them as they sing with the birds in a never-ending loop of every sappy Disney song ever recorded. The birds are happy. The flowers are happy. The cute little woodland creatures are happy. The universe is happy. Life is wonderful!!!
But I am not happy. With the first brisk breeze, laced with the heady scents of freshly-turned earth and new life, I am painfully reminded of something I manage to forget nearly every winter: I am allergic to Spring.
As everyone around me cavorts with giddy abandon, shedding their winter excesses, I retreat into my house, grumbling curse words under my breath as I slam shut all the windows. I sit there, watching all the happy people, and secretly hate every one of them as I dope myself into a haze with Zyrtec and Mucinex because, quite simply, I CAN’T BREATHE.
You think you’re so great, Spring, with your flowers and your birds and your sunshine and your cute baby animals. But I know the truth. I know what you really bring. Yes, that’s right. I’m talking about the wheezing and the coughing and the sleepless nights filled with icky snot. It’s not pretty, and you don’t want anyone to know. You try to hide the truth from the world, Spring. You’re all, “Look, a baby bunny!” in order to distract us from your insidious evilness.
But it’s not working with me, Spring. I know. And that knowledge will set me free … as soon as I find my bottle of Zyrtec and a fresh box of Kleenex.