I’ve been away. Not in the camping, skiing or snorkeling sense. But away from my computer in the sick, cough cough cough sense. Arranging words just so is impossible when brain matter’s being invaded by nasties.

So I see by the calendar that I missed the first day of spring, and along with it the elation it brings after so many gloomy months. Seeing that first Daffodil always jumpstarts my optimism for a better year. (One cannot have too many fresh starts.) It’s perky yellow trumpet signals me, no, begs me to smile back no matter how ugly I feel at the time. Thank you, Mother Nature.
The phrase “spring cleaning” conjures up images of 1930’s housewives beating the heck out of wool rugs hanging across the backyard. Back then, it meant there was just a lot of dirt in the house and no superduper vacuum cleaners. I like to think of it as starting fresh in other ways, too. In my mind, spring’s a reliable signal that gives me a prod at a time of year when I start to sag. “Zap zap, time to get moving again, girl. Nature’s growing, how about you?” 
Changing attitudes and perspectives takes an open mind for sure, but opening your mind to possibilities only works if you think change is even possible in the first place. I know firsthand that an old dog CAN learn new tricks, but aging brings wisdom only if minds are open to change. I’ve met plenty of people who believe their personalities are set and always have the same reply, “That’s just the way I am.” New information — a better way — has a hard time getting past that barrier. 
Of course some basic tendencies are set and what make us unique and interesting to each other, but others you wish you could just throw away. Certain traits are pretty stubborn, but I love and live by this quote from Maya Angelou, “When we know better, we do better.” It gives me hope, and knowing things CAN get better is a significant stress reliever. The book Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself was really an eye opener for me. You mean I’m not stuck with myself, or my circumstance, forever? Yahoo!  
Disclaimer: I’m still not 100% so excuse any lapses you see — typos, bad grammar, bad advice! The upside of being sick, if there can be such a thing? Feeling double great when the bug-battle has finally been won.