September

I know I haven’t written in almost a year… that’s all I have to say about that. 

 

I like September.

It probably goes without saying that I like New England in September. I loved Fall in Missouri and Tennessee and Alabama, too, but Fall in Connecticut is a different category altogether.  September is the start, the slow fade at the tippy tops of trees. The maples in my yard are beginning that whispery-rustle of dropping leaves. September is the first hint of October’s brilliance.

I like the kids going back to school for a million reasons, namely this one: I’m by myself! Introverted me can hear my own thoughts, finish an entire task, choose my own adventure quiet moment. Geeky me can do ALL the nifty organizing and planning. But I also enjoy the process of choosing 1st day outfits and cleaning up the book bags and color-coding the calendar with school dates and activities. not everyone does that? what? weird. 

I like the new schedule, or the return of any schedule at all after summer lazily drifts by. The beginning of this season feels sweet and fresh. I like the chance it gives me to think about what’s important to me- where do I need a new routine? What do I need to work on, change, grow, or leave behind?  Note to self: leave behind Netflix binges on the couch, work on folding the laundry before the sock drawers are empty.

I like the transitional weather. Just past the heat of summer, before the bite of Winter hits the air. My favorite outfit is shorts with long-sleeves, which is a September staple. Cool mornings, warm afternoons, evenings outdoors by the fire pit… good, good, good.

I like that we celebrate our wedding anniversary in September. We remember the promise we made with our family and friends surrounding us, the bread and the wine (and the spider) and the rings and the kiss…

 

But I’ve cried more in September than most other months put together. Not just this year; as I look back, there has been a lot of sadness, grieving, fear, confusion, and pain in September. I’ve cried with friends, with family, with our nation, and by myself year after year at this time.

It has been a record month for loss and heartache over the years, and I don’t know how to hold that in tension with the fact that I just plain enjoy September.

It feels like too much- to remember the life and grieve the death of a beloved matriarch, but also to gather in celebration with the family she created and laugh together as her youngest great-grandchild happily smashes birthday cake and gives frosting covered grins. The first year and the last moment overlapping- a family circle.

It really is too much- to ache over and over for the friends carrying unimaginable sorrow and fear into this season, but to also look forward to these days with freedom to gather friends for coffee and conversation and laughter. Friendship in sacred moments of joy and sadness.

Too much- to remember the phone call, the diagnosis, the frightening and uncertain future, but to also savor the smell of fallen leaves in this morning’s misty rain and love the feel of September as I run.

It’s too much to cry and laugh in the same hour, sometimes the same breath.

September is too much, but I can’t help but like it.

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