That Thing Called Snow


As a former East Coaster with fond memories of white winters, I have vowed that my SoCal son will see snow every year of his life, one way or another. This year I suddenly realized it was the end of March and he had yet to experience any of that rumored white stuff that falls from the sky. Scott is in Japan on tour right now, so on a whim I rented a house in Big Bear with two of my girlfriends and their kids. We piled in the car and spent a few spring break days on sleds and skis.


I was a little bit worried about the trip, never sure how exhausting T is going to be in a new environment. I’m still wary, since the days he wouldn’t sleep on a strange bed and screamed all night long in hotel rooms.

It was a wild success. The kids were adorable. They played on their own FOR HOURS while the moms sat at the kitchen table and drank tea. I’m not sure I’ve ever had a more relaxed and fun time with him. It actually felt like a vacation for me as well.

This is how I thought skiing would go- I imagined we’d put them in a class and they’d try for twenty minutes until they got sick of falling on their faces and then we’d all go sledding. Not even. That kid was bombing down the mountain after just an hour. I was so proud of him that it felt like my entire body was smiling. Not because I particularly care if he skis or not, but because he tried so hard and listened and kept at it. When he actually made it down on his own you could see the joy coming off him like heat waves. I had meant to hide and watch so he wouldn’t be distracted, but I couldn’t control myself. I was literally standing there screaming, YOU ARE AWESOME. He turned and gave me the thumbs up and kept skiing.

And then there was me. When I realized Marti and Bianca were renting skis for themselves as well, panic gripped my chest. I haven’t been on skis since I was a little girl, and even then I only did it twice. I thought- am I really going to do this thing? The next thing I knew I was sitting in a chairlift. I haven’t felt that giggly and shot through with adrenaline in a long time. I survived with only a few face plants. At the end of the day, T and I rode the “flying chairs” and made it down the mountain together. I think I will remember skiing with my son’s hand in mine, both of us screaming with laughter as the late afternoon sun glanced off the snow, for the rest of my life.


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One thought on “That Thing Called Snow

  1. hi jillian, this was just a beautiful piece on motherly love and that inate glorious feeling of wanting our kids to strive, make good choices and then to share theur successes! loved this!

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