I can't remember a time in my life when I have shown such a vested interest in the buds of springtime, but this season, they have captured my heart.
We had a full week of sunshine, kites, bike riding and freckles last week, and those sweet little buds thought it was safe to come out - nearly a full month before they usually do. March can be deceiving in her lamb-like days, but April is statistically Colorado's snowiest month.
Sure enough, along came a blast of cold, frost and snow. And I found myself actually worrying about the lovely blossoms, in all their courage and tenacity.
(I confess I've always found a strangeness in people who take responsibility for weather and nature. I've often thought it was wasted energy; what can you do about the rain, snow or sunshine? Why worry your pretty little head about it? And yet here I was, opening my blinds first thing in the morning to see how they had fared.)
One day later, after a battle with blustering wind and an inch of snow, the spring flowers have kept their grip. They've held on tight.
Grief and recovery are much like springtime in Colorado.
Spring doesn't arrive overnight, but it seems to battle against winter for its place in the sun.
Cold days show up unexpectedly, biting the noses off the flowers and hiding joy behind the clouds.
Perhaps this is why I have cared so much about the flowers this year: there may be some projecting going on here. I see my own courage, tenacity, and fragility in those blossoms.
Don't worry, sweet flowers. It was just one cold, hard day. And look: the sun is shining again this morning.
Your fragrance spills with inspiration. You survived one more day.