I woke up this morning to my dog, Scarlet O’Hara, trotting about back and forth in front of the bedroom door, whimpering until she saw me open my eyes, at which time she began frantically barking in that way that lets me know I’ve overslept. I scrambled to get myself up before ambling down the stairs to get her leash as fast as possible so the humiliating canine scolding would not commence.
When I got outside the air smelled a little differently than it had all summer. The breeze was still sweet, and the leaves were still hanging onto their green hue; yet the whisper in the air warned of fall. I could tell summer was about to pack its bags and head to the Caribbean until next April. My mind flashed forward to next month, that by the end will have rendered the first cool day. Instead of feeling glum like I normally do at this time each year when I realize summer is on its death-bed, I smiled a little and took a deeper breath in. I was ready to let go of summer…but why?
I started to think about my writing. A novel is structured with rising actions, leading to a climax, with eventual falling actions, and a conclusion…clarity of some sort. I realized I’ve reached the pinnacle of a lot of chaos and change lately. Like nature, I realized I had reached the height of the heat, suffered through the dog days, and was ready for the transition that would lead to some peace. Seasons in our lives are structured like the chapters of a novel, and the pages have been turning so fast.
When coming off a season where everything is moving so quickly, sometimes its nice to remember, the season will change. The leaves will dry up and fall off the trees. On their way out they will shine in brilliant colors, celebrating, not mourning the end of the season. The trees know they finally get to shed the heavy leaves from tired branches they’ve carried for months, and find some solace in the cool weather. When spring rolls back around the limbs will be ready to produce life again, and it will be new life, full of promise for a thriving future. So this year I’m not going to grieve for summer. I’m going to bid it farewell and let the autumn foliage have its much deserved limelight for a while. I will let the tan fade from my skin that maybe got a little too burnt this season. I will let myself end a chapter, to begin a fresh one in another season.