Snow fell last night as we celebrated the New Year next door with our neighbors. Silent and magical it drifted down coating the grass and cars. Was it a sign? The end of an unpredictable year with snow in Texas again.
Now it’s New Year’s morning and I just woke from hazy nightmare about someone’s death. Even a delicious full English Breakfast can’t shake my blues. Somehow, while Christmas was actually fun and snuggly, New Year feels bleak without my mum. My daughter says she feels the same. She says its because the New Year has somehow crystallized the realization that her gran’s (my Mum’s) loss is permanent. 2018 is a year she will never see.
Having finished my breakfast I brave the -4 C temperature and go outside, to see if the snow is still lying on the ground. Standing rubbing my hands against the cold. I see movement among the trees at the end of the garden. I pause and look closer.
One of the many joys of our new house is that it backs on to greenbelt: wild trees and shrubs. Its home to birds of prey, woodpeckers, squirrels and deer. Loads of dear. Deer who find the open patch of sun and grass just beyond our fence extremely appealing.
This morning is no exception. A doe and a dear are resting and eating just beyond the fence blending almost invisibly into the tan browns and shadows of the trees and bare earth. They look up but hardly move as I approach.
I stand and watch a while till the thoughts of missing my mum which welled up so strongly today have faded and the stag has stopped looking at me and gone back to eating. This is my resolution this year to look outside of myself to focus as much as I can on each moment and catch it as it flows through my fingers.
I return to the house to get my camera. This is my practical New Year’s resolution. To take at least one photograph a day and share it here. I can’t control what life will bring. But I can control how I look at it.
When I return they are both still there. They regard me curiously, listening as the camera clicks and whirs. Then the doe stands, looks at me, looks away, then moves off.
In 5 minutes they are both gone. The grass and trees are empty. So easily could I have missed them. But today I took the time and looked. I wonder what I will see tomorrow.