It’s a combination, really – the hallway, too small; the clothing, too voluminous; the gear, too awkward; the necessities, too numerous; the children, defiant; my patience, plummeting.

Before we even leave the house, I want to abandon plans, empty my arms and turn around. But I know, the pile of clothing will impede my way, I will trip over the gear, and the children will inevitably follow me, assaulting me with cries, tears, waving arms.

There are days when motherhood leaves me feeling little more than completely encumbered.

Winter. The weight of winter, of endless grey, of the opressive cold; the weight of child + child + bag + stroller + sippy cups + + + + +

Sometimes it is the noise; sometimes it is the needs. Sometimes I wonder if being a mother means simply, being a Sherpa, adding compartment after compartment to an already overburdened load. Sometimes I wonder how much I can actually hold.

And then I take a deep breath; deafen myself to the whining, blind myself to the mess and gather up my kids and our things. My kids. Our things. We leave the house.

The air is crisp and the wind is cold, but the sky is wide and the streets are quiet. The children make it into the stroller and a shaky sense of purpose, a glimmer of peace, replaces chaos. We walk, and I let the thought swirl around me, replacing the snow: Spring will come. Spring will come. Spring will come.


  1. this is exactly how I felt on monday...(minus one child)
    Apparently this week is considered the most depressing week of the year.
    now it all makes sense...

    I'll bet it never snows in Guernsey ;

  2. But when? When will it come? When will puzzles and colouring become just a couple of indoor options among many more in the wide warm world!

  3. Not soon enough for me. Could you make me some cocoa? I read your post, but was too disheartened with the cold to comment.

  4. God, I hear you. I can't wait to go out without dealing with snowpants, boots, hats, scarves, coats, and mitts - for all three of us. Please, bring me the days of one light jacket! And hurry!

  5. Encumbered - word of the day. I'm definitely feeling it.

  6. I feel the weight of school projects and questions of whether one child is going to make it thru grade two. I feel the weight of my own doubt in myself as a parent when I snap and snarl.

    and I just want someone to throw the dog a bone.

    and spring and birds and colour and renewal.

    Lightness. But nothing. Nothing is harder than two VERY small children and snowsuits. This I remember all too well.

  7. pg - the most depressing week? really? maybe that explains why I am about to lose it.

  8. yes yes yes.
    100% exactly what i'm feeling...only you say it so much better than i ever could!!

  9. blah, blah, blogJanuary 23, 2009

    Very well done.

    "The weight of winter".

    I love it.

    The battle to get the girls bundled up can be very demoralizing, but I persist because to get out is always better than to not.

    And, on occasion, you get one of those magical winter days: blues skies, crisp air, sun shining on snow. Children playing happily with rosy cheeks and noses.

    It's fleeting and far too infrequent, but it lifts the soul.

  10. blah, blah, blogJanuary 23, 2009

    On second thought, grammatically, I guess it should be 'children, with rosy cheeks and noses, playing happily'.

    Although the original version is far too often true in this snotty season!

  11. blah, blah - i am always trying to get my kids to stop playing with their rosy noses ;)

  12. Winter ain't so bad--what about tobogganing?

  13. Full disclosure: I do as little as possible outside in the winter, save for the odd day (there's been one so far) that the sun is shining, the wind isn't blowing and I'm in the mood to go outside and play. Otherwise, it's all Chris.

  14. spring will come
    but until then I'll be in Hawaii!

  15. sister, otherwise known as anon: beeeeeeyotch.

  16. Ugh. I do most of the packing up and prep work for just getting out of the house here, too. And the word sherpa is kicked around rather frequently by my husband.

    I think some days it annoys me more than others because it seems so unappreciated... but without my constant organizing and reorganizing the travel gear, etc., we would never go out!

  17. Do you live in my house? I spend more and more time these days fantasizing, I mean REALLY fantasizing about closets, dry wall, cupboards with one (not eight) layers of paint and doorknobs that work. I mean sure our home has shit loads of character, it 60+ years old, but mostly there are just shit loads of clutter to trip over and swear at every waking moment of everyday. And it drives me crazy!
    So I know how you feel.

    Sorry to rant my rant on your blog.
    If I told you I love you would it help.


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