Today is March 26 and it is like 80 degrees in New Jersey.
I find unexpectedly unseasonably warm days, such as these, to be very pressure filled. It is as if the weather is directing everyone and everything to leer and shout: “Get outside!” “Don’t be a loser and miss this!” “What’s wrong with you? everyone else is doing it!” “There won’t be another day like this!”
It is like so pressurey! Sometimes I want to shout at the people taking a long run at Newton Lake, the birds chirping and the children swinging at the playground. I mean, really, just leave me alone, man. Stop riding me to be outside!
Because, more often than not, the unexpectedly, unseasonably warm day does not align with regular deadlines, kid activity transport, work and meetings, homework and responsibility and laundry.
I mean nothing really aligns with laundry. Or cleaning. I’ve made it my policy to avoid aligning with chores no matter what the weather. And really, my husband mostly does the laundry. I just write about it.
So, on warm days, I often get this intense stress and anxiety coupled the sense that somehow the magic of day is going on entirely without me and I am a prisoner to reality. Then, of course, I begin beating myself for not planning better; but that’s just silly because the entire universe cannot pivot course when it is 80 degrees in March in New Jersey. But still. . . I feel this nagging like I should be out there!
My kids experience the same thing. They are practically in fits of total hysteria when a nice day appears. If I even suggest that they bring their laundry down (laundry, again!) or do their homework, there is a total meltdown because they, too, can hear the leering and chanting of the warm day.
I find it really annoying and strangely guilt inducing: what kind of mother would hold clean sheets over warm breezes!?!? Responsibility over time with the neighborhood kids?
I mean why is the weather just so demanding and judgmental?!!
So, friends, as I write this from my car, with the windows up and air conditioning on and Pearl Jam blasting, while I wait for the end of soccer practice, I want to tell you that you don’t have to go outside on a nice day. It’s okay. Don’t listen to the gentle wind or the sweet call of joyful children at the park (and certainly don't listen to the weather forecast!). The unseasonably warm day will be there, again, to make you feel like a failure and maybe that will be the time when you can give in and enjoy it.
Of course, this is all dependent if there is another nice day. It is entirely possible this is the last one ever. Okay, I am kidding, that was the warm breeze talking.