I sprawled on the snowy banks, limbs akimbo. As I unzipped my jacket, it felt as if steam escaped from each chamber of my heart. My legs burned. My arms ached. Every pore was a bruise.
Two five year old girls, dressed in matching pink snowsuits whisked by me on their skis. Swishing and giggling, leaving only icy spray in their wake.
I hated them. Their natural balance. Their fearlessness. I felt every one of my years as I slumped on the snow, doing my best impersonation of a speed-bump.
"Okay, let's do this," I mumbled, hoisting myself to a standing position. I shifted my weight, bending my knees forward. I glided, as the chill gave way to breathless, flurried motion.
And then, just as I stopped gritting my teeth, I crumbled into a heap. "God Damnit!" I mumbled. "Stupid piece of shit snowboard."
My husband's cousin slid to a smooth, perfect stop by my side. She lifted up her sunglasses, exposing sun-kissed cheeks. "You're pretty pissed off now, aren't ya?"
I coughed, "Yes. This kinda sucks."
She leaned in, "You know," she whispered, "You're so close. You've gotta use your anger sometimes to make things happen." She shushed away, a transcendent snowflake already melting in my palm.
I was white-hot. Glowing. The anger was mine, and I would use it.
I stood up and locked in my bindings. I stared down the hillside, and let go of the earth.
I would not be grounded. Lesson learned. *
*After falling on my ass about a million more times.