Here I sit, content in my front garden. The candles are lit all around me, there’s a soft evening glow casting shadows on the path, the scent of flowers and candles hangs in the air, as if it has no place else to be but here, with me. I have to pinch myself because it almost seems too perfect. Nothing is hurting bad enough just now either. The sound of a teenager’s skateboard quietly traversing the street and the evening birds, mixed with the somewhat uninvited sound of the air conditioner are all part of the scene, making it perfect.
I wonder when it was last I felt this way. Lately, I’ve had several of these nights, where I sit out in the Muskoka chair and lose myself to the mild summer night. Maybe it’s the caress of the gentle summer breeze with the temperature just right, the nostalgia and romance of the summer garden, and more than likely, the knowledge that soon this will all be gone as the summer passes, so I need to get every last drop of goodness out of the season. Every night that I can spend in this beautiful magical garden is a night I can hang on to when the weather turns cold again. I will have had these summer nights that’ll remind me that winter won’t last forever. It is what will get me through the wintry days when the chill keeps me indoors. I turn into a hermit then, not wanting to step foot out of doors, even for things I enjoy.
It is interesting though that the cold winter, makes the summer all the more inviting. The anticipation of summer months has a certain delicious feeling. If it was summer all year long, would I enjoy summers as much or appreciate the special pleasures only the warm weather can bring? After all, the hard won battles are all the more gratifying than those we didn’t have to struggle to get through. When we have so little, we appreciate everything we have; when we have too much, nothing seems special. You only take for granted things that come easily. When you’re learning a craft, every achievement is a victory to be celebrated and marveled at. Once you’ve learnt the craft, all those early achievements seem run of the mill, forgettable.
There is a lesson here. Too often we forget all that we have achieved. We think of the next goal, eye on the prize we think…forgetting what got us here, in a position to achieve ever greater things. It is here, at this juncture, we must stop and reassess our motives, confirm to ourselves that our reasons for wanting more are sound, that we are not losing ourselves in the strife to gain more and then, be grateful, systematically for the very first thing to the very last one that got us where we are. For if we do not appreciate every little blessing in our lives, we lose ourselves to mindlessly running after more without enjoying the season and at the end of life, all seasons have been lost and time once past, cannot be retrieved.
Here in our mortal lives, every day is a gift, every moment precious. May we all chose wisely how we spend our summer nights. ❤️