On August…

I have a lot of fond memories of August growing up. It was fair time where we could exhibit our 4-H projects, go to tractor pulls, watch the various horse races, and rodeo events and ride the rides. Which are incredibly tame compared to what we have now. It was where we could meet up with our friends and get into some pretty tame mischief. We couldn’t do too much as there were parents everywhere keeping an eye on us all from a distance giving us space within their watchful safety net.

Our garden was still producing many veggies for us to eat. One year my brother and I even got to have a tomato fight right out of the garden! My mom had canned more spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, tomato juice, and every other kind of tomato canning you could do that she was done…done…done!!! And she told us to get rid of all those tomatoes!!! I am not sure a tomato fight was what she had in mind, but we were successful in getting rid of all the tomatoes that were left in the garden.

We also still had the entire month to play or help out around the farm before school would begin the Tuesday after Labor Day. And the days seemed to go on forever as we cooked hotdogs, ate homemade ice cream, caught fireflies in jars, ran around barefoot and enjoyed the freedom only time with nothing pressing to do offers.

It was also hot! But we were fortunate in that we had a pond on our property. So, when it got too hot, we could just walk down to the pond and jump in the cool spring fed water. Or, if we wanted a pop (that is a soda) we would hop on our bikes and ride the five miles into the nearest small town (no stop light) and get a pop at the gas station, then we would head back home. It was great!

It was truly a time of “lazy, hazy, crazy, days…” But the thing about August is that is heralds an ending too. Summertime is almost over, and the time of fall and harvest will be coming quickly. Preparations for winter need to be considered just as in Florida we need to consider preparations for hurricane season in May. The seasons teach us that nothing stays the same. Change comes and goes. Change seems to be woven into the warp and weft of life. And August is a month that seems to signal a change from one season into another.

We are currently in a season of change brought on by a pandemic of epic proportions. Everything is being impacted. When we finally see the end…if we see an end to Covid. We may only come to a place where we are able to manage Covid. Not unlike we manage the flu. But when we get to whatever place we get to, life will be different. Just as life is no longer like it was when I grew up, life will not be the same after Covid. But here is the important thing to remember: How we handle the changes life brings us, impacts who we become. Do we want to be bitter about what has been lost due to the change? Or will we embrace the change and find ways to make the changes work for us. Hmmm…I can’t help but wonder if that isn’t the secret to life? How we deal with all of life’s changes is determined by how we make it work for us or maybe what we do with those changes that helps others.

I hope you are able to embrace the changes that have come and are coming. So, for today, I will leave you with a beatitude a friend shared with me (thank you Gretchen): Blessed are the flexible, for they will not get bent out of shape.



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