Autumn is here! My favorite season. September through November have been my favorite months for as long as I can remember (and the last few years added dates to make them even better). I love Halloween (it was always a big to-do in our house growing up.) I love the crisp air and the smell of wood burning fires and fresh apple cider (warm... mmm... even better...) I love long sleeves over tank tops (although you'd never know it), sweaters over blouses, and jeans over shorts. I love the way the fog turns to ice on the windows... The way the sun dips a little lower in the sky... The way the wheel of the year continues to turn. I like to feel like I can start over and renew and refresh. That I can toss out the old around Halloween and being anew at Christmas. That it is a time most cultures were brought face to face with the knowledge that we are dust and to dust we will return, and remembered their beloved dead. September... when Bobby and Maya were born (albeit 2 weeks early to be considered truly within "fall" but I dont care!). October... when Nicholas and Sophia were conceived. November... when Alexander was born. Good months... Blessed months.
Technically, astronomically, the fall equinox isnt until tomorrow, at around 11pm EDT. But, to make things easier, our calendars observe all the equinoxes and solstices on the 21st of their given months. (They can range anywhere from the 20th through the 23rd astronomically.) Besides, tomorrow is my nephew's birthday, so I'm posting about fall today! To learn more about the equinox, you can click here.
Equinox. Equal. Balance. A time of balance. How I want that. How we all could use a little more balance in our lives.
As the kids get older and more independent (which seems to happen a little more every single day), I am reminded that one of the most important things I can do for them is give them a balanced life. Which right now means balancing tv with playtime or balancing breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. Or balancing who sleeps on my left and who on my right during naptime. But teaching them balance, and how to keep that balance in their lives, that is the true work. And I suppose, it will be one of the true measures of my success as a parent once they are older.
I feel my life slipping out of balance. I walk through the valley as time passes. I wait for the sun to set in a western sky. I look for an equinox. I wrote those words years ago. And, still, how true they are. Trying to balance myself: the person the world sees with the person I am. My hidden truths and my voice. My light and my dark. Balance. True, unadulterated balance.
I find I am more at peace when I meditate, when I let myself feel completely and without my guard up, when I pray, when I blend movement and mind in yoga, when I take my cultural and ancestral traditions and mix them with my current lifestyle. And yet, still... Is it just too much work? Is it easier to pretend and cast things by the wayside?
I don't know. But I want that balance back. There are a few moments in time that I can look at and say "Balance." But they are few and far between. But it is never too late to try again.
Never. Too. Late.
Perhaps this fall I will find my lack of balance fading away and, as winter approaches, I can find myself anew. Renewed. Refocused. Refreshed.
But for now... Balance. An equinox.