Summer will be here soon; in many ways, it’s already knocking on our door here in the Midwest. We’ve finally packed away our coats and sandals have replaced the snow boots piled by the back door.
I must admit, I haven’t been handling this adjustment back to life in the Midwest particularly well. Things to complain about come much quicker to my lips than things for which I am grateful. I compare our life now to our life in Colorado, and the Midwest just doesn’t hold a candle. In time, it will. I will fall in love with new things about our city and routine will come. The stubborn part of my personality is clinging to all the things I miss about Colorado. In an effort to practice gratitude and pay attention to God’s goodness all around me, I’m noticing the signs of summer differently this year.
Our new neighborhood is decidedly more urban; neighbors and cars are louder and the yard is smaller. We haven’t cleared space for a vegetable garden yet. And I am learning that this practice of Celtic spirituality is about more than just noticing or appreciating the changes that come with each passing season. I am learning about acceptance, accepting the good and bad of the season of life I’m in.
There are different rituals that mark summer’s coming now…
- Listening to neighborhood kids playing outside well past my toddler’s bedtime
- No longer hearing the school bus roar down the street early each morning
- Talking to neighbors who have finally emerged after the long midwestern winter
- Getting the first mosquito bite and the first sunburn of the season
- Firing up our grill and eating outside in the evening sun
- Staying up late enough to see fireflies
I succumb to the temptation to compare so quickly, rather than appreciating these new firsts. If we’re not careful, we could wish life away waiting for circumstances to be just as we’ve always imagined them or just as we’d like them to be.
On a recent walk around the block, my daughter and I were greeted by a possum digging through our neighbor’s trash. (Yes, I did shriek and quickly walk in the other direction). I’m not particularly grateful for the experience, but it sure was fun. Things are very different, and I have a feeling we’ll be adjusting for a while. In the midst of finding our new rhythm, there’s plenty to appreciate.
Kelsey Hart is a friend and supporter of Celtic Way