I’m really happy that autumn is here. Each season brings a gift, a new reason to celebrate life.
Summer used to be my favorite season, but now autumn has taken its place. Since I started college in 2000, the beginning of autumn has felt like the beginning of a new year. Not only do most school years start in August or September, but my birthday is on September 16, just a few days before autumn officially begins. September has become my month for thinking about the upcoming year.
Usually, with each new year, I feel hope and excitement about the possibilities ahead. And I feel motivated to set goals for myself. Of course, sometimes I also think about any expectations that weren’t met during the previous year.
I woke up on the morning of September 23, the first day of autumn this year, feeling incredibly grateful. It wasn’t a forced gratitude, either, like the times when I’ve hyper-focused on lists of “what I should be grateful for.” This was a deep and genuine gratitude for my life, struggles and all.
The night before, I had a dream that I was in a post-apocalyptic world. I don’t remember the details of my dream, but as I woke up, I realized how blessed I was to be living a “normal,” predictable life. We live in a house in a quiet neighborhood, we have jobs and money in the bank, and I have a car that I can drive to an actual grocery store. I woke up realizing the value of the simple–even boring–aspects of my life.
Later that day, I truly appreciated the cool autumn breeze. (Not only was it lovely, but it made up for the fact that my car’s AC wasn’t working.) I stopped by this pond during my break, and I let the sun and the wind wash over me, reminding me that life can be magnificent.
As I begin a new season, a new year, I want to be more grateful. Even if it’s a forced gratitude at times, hopefully it will be the kind that I can feel beneath the surface. I want to appreciate the many simple-yet-important things that I take for granted.
I also want to be more patient, because this season may not bring everything that I want it to, but that doesn’t mean that it can’t be a significant season of my life. Not all of the puzzle pieces are beautiful. Some are difficult to make sense of. But each one matters.