Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Fall into Winter

I used to love fall. Crunchy leaves under my feet and cooler weather--sweater weather--was my idea of a perfect day. Part of me still does . . .I just want different things from the days than life is offering. This fall, I'm not loving it.

Maybe it's just that I had made the decision to leave the classroom last year, but failed to find a financial option that let me do so. Maybe it's the new responsibilities that my first significant successes as a writer have brought into my life (without taking any of my old responsibilities away).

Either way I'm grumpy, and trying to shake it.

Daylight savings didn't help. It never bothered me to go to work in the dark, but it bothers me a lot to come in the dark and feel like I never got to see the sun.  Getting extra-cold super-fast didn't help either. There's frost already! It makes my hands, knees and foot ache with that deep internal pain that we're not yet admitting out loud is arthritis. (I'm only 43!) I may have to buy a coat. I haven't owned a real coat since I moved to North Carolina.

There are compensations, though.

Since it's cold, I get to sit next to the fire warming my toes under a blanket and drinking cocoa, often with cuddles from husband, child or dog. I get to wear jeans to work as part of our holiday fundraiser at school. It's not hot (if you think I don't like cold, you should hear me kvetch and moan about hot). I look cute in sweaters.

I think it's time to find the joy of fall again. If I can get home during daylight, I'll rake up a pile of leaves and jump in with the kids. There's a special sort of joy that comes only when you have colorful leaves in your hair. You wanna come? I'll make the cocoa.


  1. I admit that watching a fire burn in the fireplace, or, in my case, a Buck stove is satisfying and comforting. That's as far as I'll go. The lack of sunlight drives me crazy, and even the Happy Light I bought at Elizabeth Hein's book debut doesn't help very much.

    I admire you for being able to juggle teaching and writing the way you do, and you've done it successfully. I know how much teaching can take out of you. I was rolled out of school three times on a gurney before I realized it was killing me.

    Take heart. You're living up to your obligations to others and to yourself, and you're succeeding where lesser mortals have failed. Your writing success is someday going to make teaching just another unpleasant memory, like banging your shin on the coffee table.

    1. Thanks, Jason. The juggling is harder at some times than others . . .