When I was presented with the opportunity to become the new writer of the Valley Strong blog, my first thought was excitement. My next thought was panic. I found myself struggling about what to write about since I’ve never written a blog and I’ve read maybe five throughout my entire life. However, I’m always up for new experiences and writing is one of my passions.
I came to the Wet Mountain Valley in 2008 from Murrieta, California. As a three year old who had never experienced snow, I was amazed by the angelic specs fluttering down from the sky with such grace and elegance as it softly landed on the earth. I would spend all day outside sledding off of the snow piles on our decks stairs until my fingers and toes would become numb and performing my daily routine of pounding a snowball in between my hands to form a lumpy ball to throw at my dad when he wasn’t looking then giggling hysterically until he began gathering snow to get some payback. After sledding down the same row of stairs for hours, I would plop myself down into a freshly laid pile of snow and make snow angels, my favorite activity. I would flap my arms and legs for about 15 seconds and then wobble my way up, trying to make sure my snow angel looked smooth and intact. I would then stand and admire my masterpiece, which wasn’t perfect because of all of the creases inside my angel due to my snow pants and coat but it was still beautiful to watch as all the minuscule pieces of snow glistened in the shape of an angel.
Now that I’m older, I don’t sled, rarely make a snowball, and haven’t made a snow angel in years. I look outside and see flakes falling, my first thought is usually “how inconvenient.” I’ll have to start the car early before I leave, clean the car windows with the scraper, shovel our deck and porch, then start carefully watching my steps since slipping on ice for me is like a disease and I’m very susceptible. I don’t like to drive in it and sometimes I’m convinced I’m cold blooded since no one ever seems to complain about the cold as much as I do. I can’t pinpoint the moment when snow lost its magic, but as I’m writing this, looking outside my back door at the pure white, half melted snow it occurred to me that this will be my last winter in the valley for perhaps a while, when I leave for college next fall. I realized that while I’m looking forward to the warm sands and the ocean breeze, I’m going to miss watching the angelic specs fluttering down from the sky with such grace and elegance as it softly lands on the earth, or my tongue. We get so caught up in our day to day life and so involved in what we consider the “important things” as adults, that we forget the happiness found in something as simple as a snowflake. Maybe it would do us all a wonder of good to just stop during this winter season, drop to the ground, and make a snow angel and allow the multitude of beautiful snowflakes to come together to remind us to find our joy and to take time to discover the little things in life.