Lessons from the Ice Storm


By Nancy Olson

Nancy Olson is a former broadcast journalist, wife of Congressman Pete Olson and mom of two.

Memories of January’s “Icemageddon” are starting to fade a bit as spring flowers finally make their appearance.  And while the frigid temperatures of a few months ago wreaked havoc on our lives for a couple of days – missed flights, busted pipes, cracked irrigation systems and decimated gardens – I did make an interesting observation. We really don’t like to get dressed.

Once the two-day “ice-in” had passed and everyone decided it was safe to get back to normal life (you know our reaction to winter weather really gives the people in the northeast a big chuckle), the common greeting when you were out and about again was, “How did you get by during the ice storm?” The most common response I heard is what gives me a chuckle.  For those who didn’t suffer any major damage or mishap, the popular response was, “It was great! I stayed in my pajamas all day!”

What is it about not having to get dressed and make ourselves presentable to the outside world that gives us such joy?  I’ll admit, women probably did the “happy dance” a little more than men – because, face it, we typically spend a longer time primping and fixing our hair – but overall, getting to be a bit of a slob for a day or two generally puts people in a really good mood!

So, this got me thinking.  Do we have to wait around for the mercury to drop and the weather stars to align once again to get in touch with our “inner slob” and to recapture the ebullient feeling it seems to produce?  I think not. I propose we take an “ice day” every so often to recharge our batteries. I know it’s common for most businesses and companies to give their employees “personal days.”  But, it’s been my experience these are typically used for doctors’ appointments, unexpected emergencies and the like. Taking an “ice day” would mean something different. This would announce to the world (family included) that you are “off the grid” for the day – and that you will be back tomorrow, refreshed and rejuvenated!

Oh, think of the books on your nightstand that would finally get read or the series on Netflix that you would finally get to binge watch!  Glorious!  Striving for balance and a sense of inner calm in a hectic world is something that challenges most of us. Who knew that a lack of soap and a pair of comfy PJs could be such an effective remedy?

Until next time,

Nancy