THE MAYBE CHRONICLES
Just one year ago my family and I were snow tubing and cross-country skiing at Frost Valley YMCA in the Catskills, trying to maintain some sense of equilibrium amid the rather unrelenting rounds of layoffs and furloughs going on at my husband's company.
As it turns out, Rob didn't make the cut and we faced eight long months of unemployment.
And now we're back at this winter retreat, truly grateful that my husband is working again. Not that we arrived here carefree; his devoted mother, Laura, died just days earlier, at age 82. She was a close friend to me, a beloved grandmother to our eleven-year-old son, and as I gaze at the snow-covered woods and half-frozen streams it seems that once again this whitened landscape will offer up a much-needed reprieve to my family.
Much of this year has been hectic: all of us running back and forth to the hospital and nursing home while also adjusting to Rob's new job with its long commute. Needless to say, we hadn't been spending time outdoors communing with nature – our fresh-air activities mostly of the shoveling and de-icing variety. So to be cross-country skiing on this day is a complete treat, and as I look over at the icy stream meandering alongside the trail, I consciously inhale the cool air and let out a bit of the yearlong stress.