Yesterday I stood in the late evening twilight and paused to appreciate the signs of summer. Crickets chirped their one note songs. I could hear the crackle of a backyard campfire. The burnt sugar scent of toasting marshmallows swirled together with the smoky char of firewood. Happy shouts of children playing tag echoed down the quiet streets of our neighborhood. Frogs croaked and birds called in competing tones. Fireflies began to pop out, one by one, and fly in lazy circles across the lawn. Above it all, the almost full moon shone as a bright lantern in the faded black drapery of the sky above.
It was wonderful.
Today marks the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere, sometimes called the ‘longest’ day of the year. It is one of my favorite days – a day where it seems possible that the sunny skies and delicious warmth of the season will last forever. Naturally they won’t, so I must be sure to enjoy every moment, both large and small, and tuck the memories away to revisit during the cold hours of winter.
But I get ahead of myself! The day has barely dawned and I am already assigning it to the status of a hazy memory. That won’t do, simply won’t do at all. Now is the moment for being and doing. For if spring was a time of budding anticipation, surely summer holds the days when our dreams ripen and bring our expectant hopes to full flower.
The last two months have been busy for me. I have cultivated new interests and rediscovered old talents. I been blessed with dear new friends, and reconnected with past ones. In many ways I feel that I have been peeling away a protective cocoon that I wore for too long. I have started to explore who I am, and how I want to spend this wonderful life I’ve been granted. I don’t have definite answers, but I have started the journey.
Right now, as I type this in the early hours of the morning, the rest of my family continues to slumber. I can hear a lone woodpecker drilling the trees in search of breakfast. Birds of different ilk tweet early morning hellos. Here in my kitchen, I am alone with my thoughts and hopes for the day. I wonder what will happen, and what surprises may await. The anticipation is as delicious as my fresh brewed cup of coffee.
The solstice marks a turning point in the seasons. May it also mark a turning point in my own life, a leaning into the verdant days to come.
I pray it holds the same rich promises for you.