I am a bit of an Autumnal Purist.
It’s an unpopular position, I know (even though I may have invented this title).
I love fall as much as the next person.
I just love fall once it’s fall.
You will not see any red and gold wreaths, smell any pumpkin candles, or hear me rejoicing over my closed-toe booties until the fall equinox (September 22nd, in case you’re keeping track).
I just can’t do it. As far as I’m concerned, it’s still summer until it’s not, and I will not wish these remaining days of warmth away (even if the temperatures keep trying to trick me into doing otherwise).
The kids and I passed a tree on our walk today that had started shedding its green for hues of yellow and orange and I got all Robert Frost about it.
Nothing gold can stay.
I sent two kids to preschool last week and was all, “It’s cool; no big deal. See you later girls.”
Okay, yes, that’s a lie.
Of course I overanalyzed it with painstaking attention.
(And asked Jake no less than 87 times if we were doing the right thing.)
It isn’t preschool that’s got me reeling a little bit though.
It’s Kindergarten (which, interestingly enough, isn’t even a bridge I have to cross for another couple of years).
I told Jake the other day that I can feel time slipping through my fingertips. That I see the end of these home years — these years in which our kids are with me the vast majority of their days — on the horizon, and I don’t like it.
My people are growing and changing each time I blink, and I feel the end of our long days together looming.
Nothing gold can stay.
I realized today that I take such issue with the leaves’ tendency to don their fall apparel early because of my inability to enjoy the vibrancy of colors until it’s officially fall. The earlier they start to change, the earlier they fall off. And the earlier they fall off, the less time I have to enjoy them with a warm mug of apple cider in my hand.
Jake loves my keen ability to let my anticipation of the future dictate my feelings about the present.
Right, yeah. Caught me again.
It’s one of my worst qualities, really.
If I wanted, I could live entirely in a state of anxious anticipation.
I could spend this entire year agonizing over the time I’m going to lose out on with my kids in the inevitable future school years.
Or, I could live more intentionally inside each day I’m given when I’m given it. Choose to do today well and all that jazz (which is obviously the better option).
Living in the future takes me out of the present, and I don’t want to miss a single moment of these home days.
Nothing gold can stay. (My sister-in-law likes to say, “Babies don’t keep.”)
But everything is gold in its time, and today I am resolved to enjoy each day. Each moment. Each stage.
I want to see the good in each day instead of anticipating how quickly it’s going to be gone.
This 80 degree day. My increasingly independent kids. The yellow tint in the tree next door.
The lazy and sometimes boring mornings. The 800th children’s book. The pre-bedtime insanity ritual in which every child in my house pretends they can’t hear me.
I’ll take these moments and live in them because they’re what I’ve been given today.
And today is something to be deeply grateful for.
Now, if anyone is in the area, I think I’m ready for my first Pumpkin Spice Latte.
(Okay, yeah. You’re right. Baby steps. I got ahead of myself there. Opening the windows and being happy about the cool breeze is probably a better place to start.)