Summer Reflection

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

On the bus the other day, we passed an older Victorian home overflowing with a variety trees.  I noticed for the first time that some leaves fell and were piled up at the end of the driveway.  I hung my head. It's already begun.

The nights are cooler. There is no longer that humidity that demands refreshment near a pool.  Sweaters on Poshmark are starting to sell out and my Pinterest feed turns into a pumpkin scarf thigh-high boot filled autumn wonderland.

I'm not ready to let summer go.

This was the last summer in my twenties.  It was the last summer without a little baby girl running around, truly bonding my brother and sister-in-law for life.  This little being, who shares my own DNA, will magically appear just as summer turns into fall.  This will always be "the time before her."  I'm excited for her arrival, but I know that life has a balance.  With birth, something else has to die.

I managed to snag a few days in the sun, in between church festivals, a baby shower, traveling to Utah and Colorado, and in general running around so much I didn't notice summer was over.  But the kids are back to school and another year passes.  My Summer Bucket List lays crumpled in the trash can, none of the items checked off.

Is it silly to say I wanted this summer to be something bigger than it was? I wanted this last larger than live experience to close out my twenties.  I've tried it before.  When I was turning 20, I saw the death of my teen years and that month before I ran around Manhattan until dawn, getting my ear pierced by a shady guy so high he couldn't remember the last time he slept, train hopping, watching my friends sake bomb in places that didn't check IDs, and making decisions I thought were bad enough to justify as a teenager.  I also blew a LOT of money.

There's also this other part of me that wants my twenties to die slowly, as subtly as when you first realize the days aren't quite as long as they used to be.  I floated through a lot of my twenties, mostly on the arm of some guy I knew I shouldn't be with.  I spent way too much of it daydreaming.  I used to think daydreaming was a fantastic skill to keep my brain running creatively, but I'm now realizing I spent too much of my time waiting for things to happen instead of doing anything at all.

When I look at my thirties, I don't see the burning heat of a summer sun but a cozy spring morning wet with dew.  I don't want to give up on summer, but maybe summer's letting me go so that I can huddle inside for a while.  I need to learn what drives me, what makes me want to chase the sun.  I've been baking underneath it too long.

A few weeks ago, I took my boyfriend to see Dashboard Confessional (his first concert ever, clearly he lives under a rock).  So to complete my mourning over my summer loss, we'll appropriately end with the song I've listened to at the end of every August since 2004.

So long sweet summer,
I stumbled upon you and gratefully basked in your rays.
So long sweet slumber.
I fell into you now you're gracefully falling away...

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