Each snowfall makes time melt away

My wife insists on buying me a snowblower.
“Please don’t,” I tell her.
In fall, it’s a leaf blower. Or one of those vacuum devices that will mulch them.
I implore her not to.
Her heart’s in the right place. Which means she’s concerned about my heart.
But my heart is the precise reason why I need to keep shoveling snow and raking leaves.
Not my physical heart. My spiritual one.
See, I never shovel snow or rake leaves alone. I do it with my dad.
He died in 1994, just a few days after Christmas. But since then he’s never been not with me. And that goes double when I’m shoveling the walks or raking the yard.
When I was little, real little, all I wanted to do was help my dad shovel snow and rake leaves. I’d press my face against the window and watch him tackle our snow covered walks and think he was the greatest hero ever.
I couldn’t wait until the day came when I could join him.
I cannot shovel snow today without thinking of all of that and while I’m out there the years melt away and I’m his little boy again.
My own son does not own a snow shovel or a rake. He lives in Los Angeles. In a condo. It never snows. And if a few leaves do fall, well, it’s someone else’s responsibility.
So he’ll most likely never shovel snow with me after I’m gone.
That’s okay. But it’s all the more reason I must keep doing it with my dad. The experience ends with me.

Ed Ackerman