Listening to the sound of the wind whistling around the building as the windows shook and the snow whipped into tiny volcanoes in and of themselves, I found myself suddenly nostalgic for our farm house back on the acreage.
The blizzard here was just starting to get it's footing. The winds were reaching their 50 miles per hour and the chill of the outside could be felt in my inside bones. And then, for a moment, there was quiet. So I grabbed my camera and looked outside, knowing what I would see.
Sparkly snow. Right outside my window.
It was always my favorite part of the storm, watching from the window with my mom. I can remember the night, being in the family room, watching television with the family and suddenly noticing Mom was gone.
I always noticed when Mom was gone.
I walked into the laundry room, knowing that's where I would find her. But there was no sloshing of a washer or tumbling of a dryer. It was quiet. Dark. And the only sound was that familiar whipping of the wind as she sat on a stool by the window, watching it swirl.
Her moment of silence in the peace of the white sparkly snow.
As an adult, I now recognize the quiet moment she was grabbing. A husband and six kids content in another room. Dishes done. The house vacuumed. No pressing for homework to be done or school clothes to be ready, because she knew the snow was only starting and our rural roads wouldn't be fit for the buses to pass.
She would sit quietly at the window and rest in the sound of the new fallen snow. The peace in the wild whipping of the wind. I, of course, would break her silence, but only by my presence. I liked the quiet, too.
She would show me the light we were trying to see in the distance – the one a quarter mile away that lit up Dad's hog buildings. She was making sure the power was still on so the livestock were warm and fed and safe. But then she would take her eyes away from the light to make sure I saw the diamonds in the snow.
She said they were the little gift that God gives in the middle of a storm.
And I would curl up with her on her stool and think about how she sparkled right along with them, in the quiet of the snow.
There is no doubt that those little lessons then, about sparkly gifts in the middle of storms, help me to see the sparkle in my life now. Quietly content to watch the storms brew outside my windows. But only letting the sparkle rest inside.