The month of August is already halfway over, a bittersweet month filled with endings and new beginnings. It means we’re moving toward summer’s end—the bloom of many of summer’s fruits, vegetables, and flowers is slowing down. Many crops are being harvested as we begin the preparations for the coming of fall and winter.
Families and children have begun to gear up for the beginning of the new school year ahead. Many children have already returned to school—my grandson began school here in Castle Rock on August 8! The last of summer vacationing and leisurely days at the local swimming pool are upon us as the days get shorter—by Labor Day weekend the pools around me will close. And I can already see the angle of the sun lowering in the daytime sky.
Here in Colorado …
In the past two weeks I’ve already smelled more than a few fallish mornings. Along with crisper mornings, the nights have become visibly cooler. As I drove north yesterday, I saw one tree-lined path sprinkled with yellow leaves … already. It seems as if fall may be coming a bit early this year.
I feel the anticipation of fall and winter—and the snowy days ahead when we spend more time indoors looking out at the blanket of white that envelops our neighborhood. Yet, I don’t feel quite ready to say goodbye to this season of activity and abundance. My yard is still abloom in vivid, bright colors of yellow, purple, pink, blue, and white. The bees and butterflies are still busy at work. The birds still fill my trees with song and cheery morning and evening greetings.
I know that the colors in my yard will soon fade and the hummingbirds will disappear until next spring. I sense the impending invitation to move inward as the days grow shorter. The cooling weather invites me to wrap myself in the warmth of outer layers of clothing and even a shawl in the morning and evening. Soon, indoor fires, warmer foods, and hot drinks will call me further inward—both indoors and deeper into more introspective pursuits.
For today, though …
I will enjoy summer for a just a little bit longer, when I can be outdoors and continue my outward-looking focus on nature and outdoor activities. Biking on my electric bike has become a much-loved activity and the occasional paddle boarding outing has filled my water-craving self with so much goodness.
This time of year reminds me to prepare for the cooler seasons ahead, but to appreciate every present moment of warm days and cloudless skies—to take in what’s left of summer while it’s still here. To be in the here and now. To be in this “in between” place of the changing seasons and appreciate all that it represents.
As Joan Borysenko says in Pocketful of Miracles, “August reminds us of the impermanence of all things. All that seems so dependable will someday pass away. In that poignant knowledge we mature into a deeper appreciation of all we have, of all we love.”
What do you love most about summertime? What do you love and appreciate most about your life?
My invitation to You …
Take a walk in nature during this month and experience your surroundings. What changes do you see taking place? What does the “here and now” mean to you? What will you miss most about summer? What do you look forward to with the coming of fall? How can the knowledge of the impermanence of life bring you more joy in the present? I invite you to contemplate these questions and journal about them. See what gifts of understanding and perspective come forth. Allow August to help you see the richness of impermanence.
Each month and season offers us beautiful gifts—endings and beginnings bring an undeniable richness to our lives as we acknowledge what was, what is, and what will be. Use your journal as a place to connect with and be present to the sacredness of your days. And, if you would be so kind, I’d love to hear what you discover!!
August blessings to you!