So I am setting a personal challenge for myself this week. Write a flash fiction no more than 700 words about snow, or using the word snow within it. I expect a lot of people can relate to this flash fiction.
It was many years ago when the white dust floated across the ground, when carefree waves of joy, freedom and contentment flooded her soul. She remembered. Oh for days gone past, when the childlike bliss controlled the day and the freezing cold barely reached through the layers of concentration built up around her. No distractions, just fun. No cold, just laughter. No deadlines, just time.
But times had changed. She was no longer a child, no longer free to let go of the turmoil that crashed inside her, its waves of emptiness leaving her less than functioning on most days. When she saw the snow start to fall her thoughts no longer turned to freeing adventures. She thought about the frozen layer of ice on her windshield, the barely plowed driveways, and horrendously cracked streets where she traveled to make her daily paycheck. There was no joy, just bills, debt, and paperwork that piled from the floor to the ceiling.
Seasons changed several times over and the years flew by. She was almost overflowing with angst and trapped in a place where there seemed to be no exit. But she loved herself enough to know that this was merely existing, never living. When she dug deep into the pain of things best left buried, she knew that to live she would have to face every skeleton hanging in her closet.
The painstaking task of reliving moments in order to create a better future took hold of her life. She faced the demons head on, their heads butting like battle rams. She refused to look back, refused to take the easy way out, for sometimes living with the pain was so common place to her that she did not know what life would be without it. The holes carved in her heart were starting to heal with the love and consideration of the one person in her life that never pushed her to be anything but herself.
Life got better one step at a time. She still hated the cold, still stressed over her drive to work, hated the work that left her feeling soulless. She finally had a breaking point where it was either her or her job and when it became so painstakingly clear that her job had gone from bad to worse, she decided that life would be so much easier if she could remove this intrusive, abusive viper’s nest from her life. It was never an easy decision to leave a career behind, but when the career became the source of her malcontent, it was clear that the only thing she would miss was the paycheck.
She wished she could say that she quit and never looked back, but this was untrue. The aftermath of a career paved with so much blood, sweat, and tears had such an impact on her that she felt useless, unneeded, and quite shaken inside. It took time to heal, but the message of her life rang true again. She was a survivor and for once in her life the dark clouds that had started way deep back in her childhood started to clear. The sun shone around her and she felt its delicious rays.
Life changed. Perspectives altered. A child was born. She saw the world in different glasses, where the black and white of the world around her changed to rainbows, ribbons, and stars. She did not just see the joy in the world around her, it was tethered deep inside her heart every time her daughter did something that was truly amazing. In the first year so much joy filled her life that it truly set her free. She let go of her insecurities and started to live the life the universe had intended her to live. She rose each morning with a smile on her face, a twinkle in her eyes, a hop to her step to greet the tiny life who depended on her.
This year her daughter was exploring the world in so many ways in her walk, her talk, her laughter, her smile. When the first flake fell outside, she was excited for the adventure it would bring. She wanted to see the joy in her face as her daughter learned to make her first snow angel, a snowball rolled carefully in the snow, and the first snow man with lopsided balls and carefully chosen limbs. She wanted to capture the innocence of childhood and bottle it up for the rest of the world to see. Life was more than bills, debt, and paperwork. It was an endless adventure that led to something new every day. She was blessed.
2 responses to “Personal Flash Fiction Challenge: Snow”
Sometimes life can so painful that you shut yourself down. Having a daughter gave you a chance to see the world through her eyes. I plan on facing the skeletons in my closet after I’m dead. Is that a good plan? Maybe not. I am happy for you. Living in San Francisco for the past fifteen years, I have forgotten what snow is about. I kind of miss it. I am beginning to discover how shutting out the pain shuts out the joy as well. Seems you can’t have one without the other. Hence the expression, “I’m so happy I could cry”. Is that really an expression? I don’t know, but thanks again for showing an interest in my novel. Say Hello to your daughter for me, and she will have no idea what you are talking about.
It’s true. I have had to let a few things go until I’m dead too. Haha! If you never had the pain though, you would never truly know what happiness was. I will be happy to say hello to her. She’d probably go, “Hi.” right back at you. I enjoyed your chapter. Let me know if you put up anymore. Happy to read!