One of my trademark sayings in the classroom (evidently!) is, “Where does the time go?” My students of the past can even do the sigh and the slump of the shoulders as they look at the clock for me. (You never realize how much you do something till you ask the kids that watch you all day!) But as I walked around my neighborhood yesterday, I realized I was feeling the same way yet again… only this time, it wasn’t about the time of the day and how much we had left to get done.
For the past four years, I’ve lived in places where the climate changes come VERY SLOWLY. I remember the first time I finally saw leaves change color in NC... in November. I was thrilled! I didn't realize how much my body was longing for that perpetual change in seasons.
|Battle Park, in Rocky Mount, NC|
In Tanzania, the difference between hot and cold season is pretty minimal... at least in Dar es Salaam. In cool season, for example, it is sometimes cool enough to use a sheet as a cover to sleep under! So now that I’m back in Michigan, I’m ecstatic.
But I’m realizing something. With drastic seasons come drastic changes… changes that come and go quickly. I’ve been reveling in fall. But I'm realizing I want it to stick around for another year or so before moving on. I want to play in the leaves some more. I want to go to the apple orchard again. I want to smell cinnamon spice and drink hot cider and watch the leaves fall and experience the on-fire image of the sun shining through the leaves of a tree alight with reds and yellows.
But the leaves... have fallen. And the weather... is changing quickly. Pumpkins have come and gone. Somehow, November snuck in without me realizing it. And today, as I talked to someone about the upcoming weeks, I realized that Thanksgiving is only TWO WEEKS AWAY!!!
There are certain moments you know you need to treasure because you know they are few and far between. Right now, for me at least, that’s how I'm feeling about the changing of seasons. I’m not sure when I’ll next be in a place where the leaves are turning and the crisp fall air stings your nose and frost comes and covers the green grass with a blanket of white crystals… maybe next year, but who knows! As for me, right now, I just want everything to hold still. To just stop. So I can breathe. And revel in God’s creation for a few more… months. And hold on to things that I treasure. And not let them fall away.