Wednesday, October 2, 2013

feels like fall


This picture was taken a little later in October, two years ago. I had Elle West a few weeks later. There is a copy of it hanging in True and Elle West's room now. Seeing it nearly always makes me smile because, although it was actually a photo shoot, this shot was candid...an authentic slouch and laugh in exasperation with True's behavior! We couldn't get him to take a picture with me for the life of us. This picture was taken near the end of the shoot, where my sister-in-law {who was also the photographer}, Laura, and I finally just gave up trying. True was almost three.

Anyway, today when I caught a glimpse of the photo hanging on the wall, it stopped me...when was that? The fallen leaves struck me with a familiar feeling, but it's been ages since I was pregnant, or has it? The thought forced me to stop and do the math. My baby girl will be two in November. The reality of it struck me with the usual...Really, is that all? and...Wow, already!? that any math relating to the time that has passed while having kids seems to elude. I've read it somewhere recently put really well...

The days are long, and the years are short.
-author unknown

Anyway, all that aside for now. Fall has never been my favorite. I always feel very unrelated to on this topic because it seems that I'm *always* hearing this time of year about how fall is everyone's favorite. I feel like the Grinch Who Stole Fall! I tend to get restless, like an animal who feels trapped, or that can sense a predator. I get down and lethargic, like a bear who's too lazy to scrounge for food and is instead just ready to hibernate...let these darn two season pass; wake me up in the spring. 

The feeling is an odd one. Someone who knows me might just assume it's because I'm from Arizona, thus thinking that winter in Colorado is tough on my blood. Yes, winter in Colorado is tough on my Arizona blood! However, I've gotten down at fall's first breeze for as long as I can remember. In grade school it meant that summer was over, and that there'd be an entire blasted school year before the next summer. Those three months were entirely too short; the school year entirely too long.

Having November babies changed things a little for me. I had True in 2008 and spent the fall months anticipating his arrival. I welcomed fall because with every leaf that fell, I was one closer to meeting my baby boy. The anticipation of his birth was stronger than that on any Christmas Eve when I was a child. I'd sit in the sun exposing my full-term belly and snooze. Just when it would start to burn {in temperature, not color} the breeze would wash the heat away leaving it with a chill. It was wonderful; the first fall ever in my life that I can remember not being depressed.

Having a newborn in the winter seemed perfect and natural...we could & would hunker down together indoors, where we'd snuggle and nap until spring. Then it happened again in 2011 with Elle West.

Expecting a baby brought enough joy and excitement that fall could come and go without bearing it's usual funk. In the years since having True, and in which I have not been pregnant, fall still brings with it a sense of woeful doom. But, it isn't nearly as bad. For one, it's too busy with small kids to get down for long, and for two, the fall breeze also returns those strong feelings of anticipation and joy...it brings feelings of newness and growth, instead of just dullness and death.

I am able now to enjoy the beautiful days of fall without winter's coming overshadowing them. These are some of the most enjoyable days to sit outside and drink coffee {one of my favorite past times}. When I feel down and lethargic in the fall these days, I just go with it. I'm lucky enough to be a stay-at-home mom with the option to just hang out if I want to. I noticed it this morning when I posted this to Instagram...

"I'm so loving sitting in the sun and watching her tool around this morning. True is in the apple tree sawing branches to make room for his tree house. Yes, he totally has a saw. #countrykids #southwestcolorado"

Just after I posted it, I went in the house to pee and saw that pregnant picture of Elle West and I on the wall. Though I still don't consider fall my *favorite*, I have certainly come a very long way.

I hope fall is bringing with it good feelings for you.

X O X O, JL

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