Spring finally arrived this year. At least it feels that way to me, finally. Enough of the foreboding darkness and the impenetrable snow. While winter felt long and heavy, I do know that actually spring came precisely when she meant to. As reliable as ever, the robins now gather hunting worms in the early morning and rosettes of soft dandelion leaves carpet the meadow.
Perhaps it's that liminal space between seasons that is so uncomfortable. When we are neither here nor there. A pause at the crossroads can last a lifetime. The potential for something always feels more frightening than the outcome, so we linger. But always, actually, just as long as we are meant to.
I met a large toad on retreat near a wild creek this past weekend. I might have stepped on it, but for the gift of attention the water required of me. My mind immediately remembered the story of Frog and Toad waiting for spring by Arnold Lobel.
"I went back home. When I got there," said Frog, "I found another corner.
It was the corner of my house."
"Did you go around it?" asked Toad.
"I went around that corner, too," said Frog.
"What did you see?" asked Toad.
"I saw the sun coming out," said Frog. "I saw birds sitting and singing in a tree. I saw my mother and father working in their garden. I saw flowers in the garden."
"You found it!" cried Toad.
"Yes," said Frog. "I was very happy. I had found the corner that Spring was just around."
Three years ago, I went to the water in search of something that always felt just around the corner. I too, found it at home.