Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Dancing in with a new partner

HOO-ray, today is the FIRST day of fall, the autumnal equinox, and my absolute, hands-down, favorite season for a myriad of reasons – not all explainable. I was married this time of year (we'll soon be celebrating 28) and my oldest, Autumn, was born Oct. 1. I didn't mind that she was 10 days late, arriving in what I consider the best month. "You can make it until then," I internally chanted.

The sky was different this morning: cold-weather cloudy with a cast of filmy mystery foreshadowing  the most playful of holidays. Late afternoon as I perch on my back porch (it's much too beautiful to be indoors, where I sat all day in a productive meeting), a cloudless cerulean slate permeates a just-arrived crispness. Its crunch infuses the September air.  The crickets are deep in conversation and a stray cicada  adds dissonance.

I could linger here ... now that my allergies have settled. The march from summer to fall takes a personal toll on anyone residing in the Cincinnati dust bowl. These transitions can be unkind and unwelcome. I make great allowances for autumn.

I feel more alive this time of year even when I understand it's the harbinger of death, decay, hibernation and isolation. Sweater weather, the riot of colors that cue each other, harvest time, pumpkins, hayrides, ghosts, bonfires and football games stir my soul. I want to be outdoors as much as possible and suck life's marrow. Three-quarters of the year is over, for which I am eternally grateful, but there is still the promise of the dark night, winter. My obsession with dusk stems from the same observation as if the day surrenders with a brilliant stroke of color only to be engulfed by the blackness. That surge of pigment is the essence of life.

If you know me or my blog, you recognize that I have no problem bumbling around in the darkness. I know that place well and, when winter rolls around, am generally ready to turn inward and reflect. Fall, however, is its antithesis. The time I want to be outside and gregarious, cheerful and fun-loving in, of all things, groups. Autumn elicits my inner extravert. I want to play in the leaves and mess up those perfect piles.

Perhaps I feel the natural balance, when day equals night, of the season and I know how to claim that in my life for a brief while. Playfulness abounds, shoving worry and darkness aside. How can I be so affected by air, light, temperature and Mother Nature? And if that's what makes me come alive, how can I recreate that effect when I am withering in sweltering humidity or under constant grey sky?

This also speaks to where I am in chronological life. And I am feeling the burst of creativity and desire to leave a legacy of color, compassion and a little spirited fun.

• How does the change of seasons affect me?
• How does my favorite make me come alive?
• How do my rhythms reflect nature's?
• Where do I see Spirit in the transitions?
• When am I most playful?

even if I hadn't
glanced at the small
print in my planner

or heard a snippet
of the morning

I would have

known that
light had begun
to fade and

that 6:30 am
seemed darker
and denser

that the sunrise
was ripe

dancing in
with a 
new partner

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