The month of September has dawned; its a month that has always brought an almost profound sense of change for me. There was many a year when the autumnal approach meant the creeping sensation of a sort of seasonal depression. These were childhood days when the first TV commercial touting Back to School sales sent a sad shudder down my spine....was it that time already? The annual Labor Day closing of my second home; the county pool? The cool air starting to waft through the Lions Fall Festival where I would drown my sorrows in funnel cakes and melancholy hayrides. My friend Kristy was often there with me and she would always relish the coming of fall and excitedly anticipate football games, new sweaters and boots and well, whatever. I would just harrumph the whole idea: fall just meant the end of all of my beloved summer fun and the advent of school; hallowed halls that held no excitement for me, at least for many years. The last few years of my high school career, I actually came to love school, but the feeling of dread never truly escaped me. As I've aged, fall tends to be just a seasonal precursor to the chill of winter (my most dreaded season of all).
Finally, all these years later, I truly appreciate the coming of fall. This particular year, that appreciation might be exacerbated by this brutally hot, extreme drought-ridden summer. I have actually looked at photos depicting snowy scenes and thought "how refreshing". We'll see if I maintain that feeling come this winter, but right now I myself am relishing that seasonal change. As the much-needed drenching rains that came from Hurricane Isaac were soaking the city, I was actually reveling in the damp and gray conditions that settled in if only for a day.
I might be enjoying the coming of Fall for another reason: Spring and Summer have been an absolute blistering blur of activity and life changes this year. 2012 has indeed been the Year of Possibilities; from becoming married to starting a new job and month by month, life has become wild and unpredictable and sometimes wretchedly busy. I find myself reeling from the ever-more-swift passage of time and as I experience moment after moment, I wonder...am I taking it all in? Am I appreciating the sheer wonder of the everyday anymore? The fact that I haven't taken enough time to write is part of my problem. Is it all passing by too quickly? Indeed and now, as the seasons change, it is time to take stock once again and as this is my 500th post, it was past time to start documenting those ever important moments once again.
One recent moment that is crystallized in my memory involves two people I know by the names of Misty and Larry. I told part of the story in my recent post Wherever the Spirit Moves You. I told of Keith and I attending a fundraiser for our friend and beloved local teacher Misty (pictured at the top of the post with her daughters Josie and Jordan) who has been battling breast cancer. K and I were there representing the local Rotary club and helping sell reverse raffle tickets which also raised money for Misty. Over the course of a few weeks, the tickets continued to be sold and the drawing would be held at a barbecue dinner each ticket-holder was invited to attend at the Elms. Our dear friend and fellow Posse member Kiko bought some tickets not only to support Misty but in memory of her mother Pat who passed away from breast cancer several years back. Kiko's father Larry, her brothers and fellow Posse members all bought tickets in memory of Pat as well and soon we were all gathered on a Thursday night along with Misty and her family and watched the drawing unfold over some tasty, vinegary barbecue and spicy jalapeno slaw.
K and I watched from the back of the room and we, among many others, watched as our numbers passed by the as the winning picks. One by one, we all would groan when our chances floated by, but two people in that room maintained an almost odd sense of calm. Kiko and her Dad Larry listened intently as the numbers continued to be called. Keith and I looked at each other as it wound down to two numbers up for the grand prize of $3000....Larry and my coworker Megan. Our jaws hit the floor when Larry's number was called and he won the grand prize (pictured receiving his prize from Elms GM Eric). The only ones who seemed utterly serene in the moment of winning were Kiko and Larry. The day of the barbecue, after all, was also Pat's birthday and to them the perfect karma of Larry winning on that day was meant to be.
A week later, Misty and her family attended the Rotary breakfast where all of the proceeds would be presented to her. Misty was gobsmacked to learn that in addition to the funds raised by the ticket sales, Larry had donated his grand prize money back to her.
Perfect karma, indeed. Karmic moment noted, respected and savored. Carry on, Autumn.