Aaron came to me this morning as he was working in the garage with four little life jackets. I sighed as I took them to a downstairs closet, where they will wait until May or June for more action.
As I snapped one and thought of the golden children who wore them, I could smell sunscreen and the lake. I almost cried, realizing that another summer had passed, a summer that would never come again, when our children were 2, 5, 7, and 9. Each summer feels like a sand dollar, so fragile and beautiful in itself.
September can be moody – hot and sultry one day, cool and rainy the next, heavy with the scent of the coming change. We hope for one last spin on the tube behind the boat, or one last bike ride while the light lasts long after dinner time.
But this September was rainy and cool, as if summer had given all the hot days it could manage for Minnesota. After Labor Day, the heat simply never returned.
Now our entry way, once littered with tiny flip-flops and sandals, now bulges with heavy tennis shoes, backpacks, and fleece jackets. We resign ourselves to another fall and winter, remembering that every season brings a unique kind of joy if we’ll only embrace it, instead of fighting it.