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Perspective: Closed doors

Katie Andraski

After a fresh snowfall, where the wind hasn’t shoved snow around our yard, I’ve followed fresh coyote tracks wandering through the horse’s paddock. He ducks through the fence, heading towards the neighbor’s barns. I see a cat’s tracks trotting along the coyote tracks in the driveway. Time must have separated them because there are no splatters of blood or fur.

With all that action in the barnyard, I slide the barn doors closed. It feels good to pull those doors shut because my chores are done. The horse is snug, sheltered from hard wind and snow and ice and rain, able to eat her hay in peace.

When there’s a hard wind and snow, I plug the cracks around the doors, so snow doesn’t drift inside the barn. There’s nothing more disheartening than snow where it’s not meant to be.

Doors that shut are as comforting as doors that swing open because they can keep us from opportunities that would break us. I think of the job at Doubleday Publishing, how I came in close but no, how that job would have broken me, all the noise in the city, the scraping by on a publicist’s salary, the hard driving intensity of a work that didn’t let up. I think how that door sliding shut, saved my sanity. I think how in many ways, closed doors have said not this way, wind and cold and snow cannot come in, but come here, behind these doors, come where it’s quiet and dry.

I’m Katie Andraski and that’s my perspective.

Katie Andraski is an author, blogger, and retired composition teacher at Northern Illinois University