The F Word

I could do without February. It is the longest month of the year for me, dragging on and on. I am well aware that it is actually the shortest month on the calendar but for me it might as well be 100 days long. In Chicago it seems like February is an evil joke. It laughs in our faces daily as we bundle up; shovel another 6 inches off our cars and head into our lives. It is bitter. And cold. I mean the kind of cold you can’t find any good in. Yes, there is ice for ice-skating and perfect snow for sledding and skiing but when it is so cold your skin actual freezes off instantly the fun of outdoor winter recreations is over.

It is the month when I have always found myself in a slump. There isn’t much in the way of sunshine and fresh air is frozen air so cabin fever becomes inevitable. It is the time of year when I can’t find any good reason to shed my flannel jammies and get out of my heated bed. Because what really could be better than warm jammies and a warm bed? Nothing in February.

I know, I know there has to be something good about the month right? I do have a few birthdays to celebrate in the month of February, most importantly my son Jack’s. I remember when he was born being so irritated (well after the being so happy he was alive and healthy part) that he was born in February. He wasn’t due until March and it was like February was mocking me once again. HA, you hate me? Now you have to like me because I gave you your kid! Or something like that.

There is also the Super Bowl and Valentine’s Day falling within the depths of February. They are both fine days, but neither of them is enough to make the month seem any more enjoyable for more than a few hours. Oh yeah and don’t let me forget Groundhog Day! Has that fat, furry creature ever NOT seen his shadow? He always says six more weeks of winter. As if I needed a rodent to tell me that!  Screw you and your shadow Punxsutawney Phil.

To me, February brings with it way more misery than good. It is a month filled with colds and viruses, stomach flu’s and sinus infections. It is hard to be happy when you are sick and freezing for the better part of the month. Every year I try and psyche myself up for the month. It is coming and it won’t be stopped so I am going to beat the blah’s and make the best of it. This attitude lasts the better part of a week and then I am back to being the negative Nellie that I can’t seem to escape throughout the month. February always wins and gets the best of me.

So you can imagine my excitement as this week started. The LAST week of February! Only 7 more days of hell and I can head into March. So I am all, “I think I can, I think I can” and then it rains. That rain does what everything else does outside right now - it freezes. And then it starts to snow and hasn’t stopped. Only a bitch of a month like February makes you hate it down to the last day.

March will be here soon enough and although I am not na├»ve enough to believe it will be warm or even not snow in March, in my mind anything is better than it’s predecessor. Because with March comes the notion of Spring, the hint of warmer weather, Spring Break vacations and sales on flip flops. All of those things are really good things. March also has St. Patrick’s Day and green beer and let’s face it, February can never compete with that.


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