Autumn, How Do I Hate Thee?

I’ve been sitting here trying to figure out how to handle such a delicate topic as the changing of seasons from summer to autumn. I find myself surrounded by people championing the beauty, the crispness, the, how shall I put this, the pumpkin-ness of everything. Make no mistake, it’s not easy to come clean about something that it seems everyone in the world is in love with. In fact, it’s extremely daunting. But I have words in my heart and a blog just waiting to be used. So I will.

Autumn, why do I hate thee? Because you’re stealing the time I have enjoyed spending with my son. Long days of going to the water park and laying out in the sun have slipped off into the great beyond, leaving behind false rays of sunshine that promise a lot more warmth than I will feel over the next six months. The lovely mornings of hiking in favorite shorts have been replaced with the uncertainty of layering–how can I know what frigidness now lies in wait for me at the base of the mountain? Known quantities have been swapped to guessing games of which I hardly ever win. You make me want to not even know. To not even get out of bed. To not even try.

Autumn, you have taken away my long days and have brought back long drives home in the dark. Early evening walks with my family are now done huddling inside of thin jackets while darting from one lit streetlight to the next. I can’t see the rocks, the rabbits, the dog poop–really, it’s a problem. And it’s only going to get more dark from here. I love my life in the light so much more. Sigh.

Autumn, you are killing off all of the good stuff. There is no more beautiful color on Earth than the bright blue that you can see between the bright, healthy green leaves of a tree. I have spent hours outside just living inside of that color. Dreams. Life. Peace. They’re all there. And then you show up and start blowing away the weakening leaves and the sky dissipates into a smudgy blueness that grates against the newly empty branches. The trees that manage to hold their leaves longer than most become dry and brittle on the top, while the bottom clings to the belief that it will stay green forever. I don’t have the heart to tell them the truth. They’ll find out soon enough. And so will the flowers and the grass.

Autumn, you make me notice my fat. You might say, “But, you were just living in shorts and thin shirts for the past four months, surely those clothes made you notice your fluffy body.” And you would be right–to a point. I love the breeziness and ease of less clothing. I love the opportunity to flirt with skin cancer as I try to cook myself a little darker. I love being able to feel warm wind through my shirt and walk through the grass without my shoes on. Being fat truly didn’t matter. Mostly.

But, Autumn…pants that I haven’t looked at for months are now staring at me when I walk into the closet. Sweaters that were packed away in the basement are starting to call my name–the ugly ones, the heavy ones and the ones that I kept in hopes that I would fit in when you came back to stay. (Let’s just say it didn’t go as planned). Thinking about putting those clothes on this body just to combat your breeziness makes me want to vomit. Truly.

You put together a compelling argument though, Autumn. You make the dreadful, biting birds go away. You come barreling at me with your promise of family and holidays. Halloween, Thanksgiving…Hell, you even try to butter me up for winter’s Christmas. You compel me to dream of cocoa and s’mores and turkey. You make me yearn for fires in the fireplace and flannel bed sheets. You promise cuddles with the hubby and the boy and you promise me lots and lots of bread. Cinnamon. Banana. PUMPKIN. You dangle the bliss of blankets and books and complete lethargy. Yeah, you’ve got the goods when it comes to sales, but I’m not buying it. Because you also make me older and you usually make me sad. You make my happy times go away and I have to work double to just be me. The me that I like the best, anyway.

Autumn, I’d like to be your champion. Sometimes you surprise me with a mellow year and delight in the changing world. You’re not a completely heartless bitch. I know that. I feel the joy of seeing friends and family that truly love you embrace your promises with everything they have and light up from within. I’m grateful for that, to be sure, but I wish you didn’t have to take everything I love about summer away to make that happen.

Someday I’ll find the strength to leave you, Autumn, and I hope I will be able to remember you fondly. My life, at this point, doesn’t allow me to pack up and run for greener (and warmer) pastures each time you come along, but I’m planning for it. I’m planning really, really hard. I hope that I will be able to go so far away that when I do make the journey back to where you seem to have the biggest impact I will be able to embrace you and accept you for what you are.

Until then, Autumn, I will just have to settle for watching my happiness hibernate during the coming months. I will grudgingly go out into the dark to scrape off my windshield and I will deal with freezing floors when I wake up in the morning. I will try my best to keep the sunlight flowing into my home and heart. I will accept that I will be another year older and I will enjoy my family and friends as much as I possibly can. And I will wait. Because it will be my time again and then I will be able to rejoice in the fact that I made it through your best and that my good times will be back at last.

©DRB 2016


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