His reasoning was simple. Winter is going to happen and I can't control that, so why not enjoy fall for what it is - live in the joy of today a bit more, with less forward-looking dread. Then, he said, maybe make an effort to enjoy winter more via cross country skiing or other outside activities. He closed the argument with the fact that after December 21st, the days start getting longer again. Basically he said, you've got a good life, winter is part of it, deal with it.
It was exactly what I needed to hear. Good advice from a friend. (Paul) It snapped me out of my funk and caused me to look a little more at the present. This week provided me a chance to relish the present a bit more. Here are a few examples.
- On Friday, my son got accepted to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee college of Letters and Sciences. This was great news to both him and us. He is still waiting to hear from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and the University of Minnesota. I am trying to be mindful of these little successes and victories to remind me how blessed our lives are.
- Also on Friday, we spent the early part of the evening at a bonfire with our church community. It was a balmy 65 degrees - very uncharacteristic for late October. There's something about spending time outdoors either alone or with friends that re-grounds me.
- After the fire, I went to see the movie Halloween (from 1978) with Ben. I had not seen the movie since about 1981, and it scared the crap out of me then. Any chance I get to connect with my 18 year old who is really into scary movies at the moment, is a good thing. I'm glad I took the time to get tickets. We watch a lot of Marx Brothers movies and laugh our butts off, so it was kind of fun to get spine tingling scared together too.
27" Northern Pike (Released)
- Then, on Saturday, it was even nicer weather. It was 68 degrees and little wind, so about 10:30 I mentioned to Donna that I'd like to go fishing. We both agreed the chores could wait for a day where it was 47 degrees and cloudy. I ended up catching the biggest fish I've ever caught in my Kayak. The older I get, the more I don't want to miss chances like this. It was absolutely therapeutic being out there. I've determined that what I like about it is it is just me - no one telling me when it's time to move here or there, or what time to go in, or what I'm doing wrong. Just me and my thoughts. It's kind of like I am taking the beauty of the day and mashing it into my cranium to help me get through winter. If I can get these days in October, well, there just might be hope!
So as we creep closer to snow and darkness, I need to keep this perspective. Life is sweet and if you look at every day, there is goodness in it. Relish being with your family - they soon grow up and go to college. Cherish your friends - life is short. Appreciate the chance to occasionally change your routine at a moment's notice in order to take care of yourself - you'll be a better person because of it.