August 23, 2016

My Days are Long

Though we're still in August, I think Mother Nature is ready and headstrong for Autumn. Each morning I pass ochre fallen leaves on the stone pathway to my gate, and I look at the crispy ones brought inside by friends Saturday night I've yet to sweep up. Confusing with the juxtaposition of lush greens and fresh blooms. The last few nights no air has been needed as temperatures drop to the 50s; good for the environment, good for my wallet, everyone's a winner - sleep on top of the burdened comforter, trading in a light blanket.

School bells are buzzing again and we're slowing down in the designated zones now that children are present. And due to the children being back in their desks, my days are long, for while many of my clients do not work or work often, we now wait for them to arrive off their mango buses to start our family sessions.

My mornings are quiet, though, and there's a silver lining when you're arriving home at 8:30 nearly every weeknight, past the sunset and apologizing to your dog as you let him out the front door and pour his supper, too exhausted to play the round of fetch he is aching for. I love quiet mornings. It's been a long time since I awoke chipper to my dad playing the piano... I now prefer coffee and space. (It's not even that I need the caffeine, but rather the ritual. I often drink half a cup, and it's cold by the time I reach that point.) Shh... I wish to tell my co-workers... Come find me again in an hour. I need time to adjust to the new day, to update myself on the world while I slept.

It is with some pride that I keep in touch with current events and politics, because a decade ago, I would have scoffed at the idea. I love that with time that view has changed and I have become aware of its significance. Recently, however, it has taken a toll on me as each morning there has always been some new horror. I've had to pull back slightly. Fine tune my eyes to land on more "America's Funniest Home Video"esque videos and read about random acts of kindness and cute pets doing cute pet things. People say you should pull out completely when you feel that way but I disagree. Ignoring the problem wouldn't fix anything. Ignorance may be bliss, but it's still ignorance.

My days are long, and though I'm skilled at time management (career in social work, after all), I can't help but think the day is always over before it's been fully lived. And then it's a new day with new responsibility, and the weekends seem to fly straight past.

As always, the reoccurring trend for me appears: slow down.

I spend so much of my downtime daydreaming about my glorious future that I'm not taking full advantage of my glorious present.

So today, I'm writing a letter to a beloved professor I haven't spoken to in a couple of years. Today I am playing with my dog after he's waited all day to do so. Today I'm going to light a candle with my dinner and pause between each bite. (Seriously, how is a week's worth of leftover potluck pasta ever wrong?) Today I'm going to make plans for how to savor my upcoming free-time Thursday morning and Friday - and not any further ahead.

My days are long, so I should have plenty to say about them. My days are long, so I should squeeze in time with friends. My days are long so I should make something with them. My days are long so I should grow something with them. My days are long, but numbered, so I should be grateful for them and live them well.

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