The first day of school was always a day met, for me, with both eager anticipation and deep despair. While it was a joy to get dressed up, as we did in those days, head out early on brisk mornings, and get back into a routine it also marked the end of carefree summer days.
Autumn has been a bit late this year. More than two days this past week have been in the 70s, an anomaly given the typical continental weather in the Pennsylvania community where I live. As we have sadly realized, global warming is throwing off the delicate balance of nature in so many ways. Although I admit I have enjoyed not wearing a jacket for just a few days longer, I am terrified for our planet, for her sustainability and viability in years that will stretch out beyond my own.
Despite the warm weather, I have been reminiscing about those early fall days of my youth, and remembering how this season compels me to ritually adopt certain routines that for some reason seem most welcome at this time of year. Like the giant trees that gently allow their leaves to return to the earth, I am letting go of things that have an expired meaningful purpose in my life. Things that are unnecessary, a nuisance. Internally, I am letting go of thoughts and feelings that weigh me down, allowing them to fall away from my life. After an almost too comfortable summer, I am re-establishing habits to improve my health and well-being. Life feels crisp, fresh, and breezy.
Autumn is now about halfway gone, and soon winter will arrive. Cold, snuggly days sipping warmth and longing for sunshine. I’m clearing my space to prepare for the pristine emptiness of our next earthly phase.