That's the only way I can explain this. Give me a sun-soaked day with air so thick you could swear you were breathing through a damp towel, and I'll sing to you the praises of iced tea and swim suits and wading pools and popsicles and bare feet in the grass.
But give me a snow storm that shuts down local infrastructure meaning you can't drive anywhere and the grocery stores are depleted even if you can get there and there's no school and your husband's office parking lot is too sketchy for him to seriously consider going to work and routine and order are out the window and the weather chick promised a warm up on the weekend but now it's Friday and it's snowing again and it looks like it might snow again next week and . . . and I'm curling into a fetal position and wondering how many Vitamin D3 pills one can take before it's considered a "cry for help."
I've got nothing else to do, so here's the play-by-play of my mental health this week:
DAY ONE - TUESDAY: Resigned Enjoyment
* Wake up to grinning girls, enjoy the look of wonder and joy on their faces as they assess the snow-covered lawn. Determine to try to make the best of things.
* Ride high on waves of contentment after launching Give:LOVE project. Warm fuzzies all day long.
* Accept husband's invitation to watch a movie. In the middle of the day. When other chores await. He picks Food Matters off of Netflix and both of us are fascinated and intrigued.
* Spend twenty minutes dressing girls in layers of warmth to go out and play in snow. Officially join The Oklahoma Hillbilly Club by completing initiation requirement: wrapping Wal-Mart sacks around shoes to create makeshift snowboots.
* After approximately seven minutes, four snow angels, and zero snowballs (snow is too powdery) later, decide to go back inside. Mugs of hot cocoa all around. Smile and think, "this isn't so bad."
* Give thanks for long-ago purchase of hop ball . Create hop ball relay games to allow the girls to burn off the rest of their big energy.
* Big pot of chili for dinner.
* Read many, many books before tucking girls into bed.
* Watch Food Matters again with husband, this time while shopping for spiralina, cocoa nibs, and niacin supplements. Fall asleep thinking of studying to be a naturopath.
DAY TWO - WEDNESDAY: Optimistic Acceptance
* Wake up to sunshine falling on snow-blanketed neighborhood and grudgingly admit that the sparkly landscape is kind of beautiful.
* Insist to husband that to make it through another day inside, lots of time alone with Bible and prayer are required. Close myself in our bedroom while he sits sentry at the door.
* Emerge feeling refreshed. Decide to have fun.
* Pull out all the stops on entertainment:
watercoloring, clay art, stuffed animal races, book reading galore. Take girls outside for more snow play. Make it ten minutes this time. Hot cocoa with whipped cream takes the edge off.
* Read Ann Voskamp's 10 Point Manifesto for Joyful Mothering at the top of every hour. Repeat "I choose to give thanks at all times" to self one hundred and eleven times.
* Husband grills steaks outside and makes a raw broccoli salad for dinner. Tastes a little like summer.
* Disaster strikes at bedtime when we realize the hot water pipe in our downstairs bathroom has frozen. During the day. Righteous anger boils up. It froze during the day? A day when it filled the tub no less than four times with warm bath water? Hot water in sink still works. Grasping at gratitude.
* Fall asleep disgruntled.
DAY THREE - THURSDAY: Rising Depression
* Awaken to discover toilet pipe is frozen. Curse.
* Weather chick perkily declares that sunshine should help a little with the melting. Sunshine fails to appear all day.
* Stay in pajamas until two in the afternoon. Mindless internet surfing. Near complete chore shirking. Listlessly thumb through Frontier catalog, try to make a list for co-op order. Want everything, decide on nothing.
* Fill toilet tank with cold water from bathtub no less than seventy-nine times. Try to teach girls "if it's yellow, let it mellow." But somehow, some unsympathetic force of nature causes their digestive system to empty every time they sit down.
* Read Fleur Adcock's poem "Things" a dozen times throughout the day. Repeat "there are worse things" as running refrain.
* Finally force self to go to the unheated upstairs where there is a bathroom that, miraculously, has fully functioning toilet and hot water. Shower with AJ peering into curtain, begging to take a bath.
* Remember that play baths are a great way for kids to pass the time. Set her up in a play bath in the steam-warmed bathroom and she plays happily for half an hour.
* Put cranky girls down for early bedtime. Halfway watch horrible movie with husband. Feel sorry for self. Need something stronger than hot cocoa to take the edge off. Fall asleep morose.
DAY FOUR - FRIDAY: Numb Resolve
* Awaken to more snow falling and the final surrender of hot water in the downstairs bathroom. Forgot to leave hot water dripping in bathroom sink and now it's frozen, too. Crawl back under covers and sob. Sympathetic husband utilizes gentle humor to rescue me from the depths. Redirects energy, encouraging me to "write it out." And so here I am.
* The girls are fine, happily entertaining themselves with more art and more imaginative play. Husband is fine, enjoying time at home to play and to cook. I am fine, I know. There are worse things, there are worse things. This won't last forever. I know.
* Company might be coming for an overnight. House can be cleaned without decisions needing to be made. Decisions don't come easily today, but mindless work is comforting. Upstairs shower in a frigid bathroom is better than no shower at all.
* The sun is shining.
I think I can feel that Vitamin D kicking in.
(feel free to share your winter/snowed-in survival tips with me. they'll be met with gratitude, i promise.)