A lot of things have seemed to be endless, spinning in circles, immeasurable or otherwise hard to capture and put into words in my life lately. The highlight of our summer was our big house move on July 18th. It first involved what felt like endless house-hunting, then – with a 4-month closing process instead of the usual one month after we found our home – endless waiting. Then it felt like endless packing, followed by far more endless unpacking. Now it’s endless organizing, cleaning, discovering, entertaining, and just generally settling in. I don’t mean to sound ungrateful or complaining – it’s simply the flow that our life has been riding these last several months – constant, changing, adapting, waiting, exhaling, settling in.
Each of these stages has felt almost void of a clear starting point and obvious ending point. We’re just kind of moving rapidly through life as if on an airport’s automatic sidewalk, fielding the next adjustment, transition, bill or unopened box that comes our way. I get that something seeming like it will never end yet also moving quickly seems to involve mutually exclusive concepts, but somehow, they’re not. One day bleeds into the next and life is…. well, BUSY. This last month has truly felt like one of the busiest, fullest, fastest-paced months of my life. Over the weekend we had a large housewarming party and almost everyone remarked something along the lines of, “Can’t believe you’ve only been here 5 weeks!” or “It looks like you’ve been here forever!”
(EXHIBIT A: Our must-take-years-to-build photo wall, done in one day, with full credit to my husband:)
Well, that’s because we’re crazy. Or neurotic, or people with OCD and/or perfectionist tendencies. The goal was that hosting a big party relatively soon after moving would light the fire to get this house put together much more quickly than most sane people would attempt, and that we did. The idea was that we would be glad we did it, and glad it was done no matter how hard the work was. Well we have worked hard, and we are now ready to truly RELAX in our home. And we have a 3-day weekend ahead with NO PLANS, which we might be really excited about.
Another thing that has been endless this summer is the WEATHER! If you’re reading this and you’re not in Seattle, but live somewhere like, say, California or Florida – well it’s pretty much like we’ve been living there, too. Since June. I have lived in Seattle my entire life – over 30 summers now – and cannot remember a more consistently sunny, very warm, almost rain-free summer.
Normally by August 27th I’d be pining for fall (wow, really bad pun not intended). But there’s something about the lightning speed with which this summer – however hot and sweaty – has unfolded, that has me hitting the pause button and saying, “You know what, summer? I’ve been played by you before, and I know how this games ends. I’m gonna miss you when you’re gone.” So pumpkin candles and Halloween costumes and red wine and pie – YES I still love you deeply and can’t wait to hold you in my arms again. But I’m not going to treat summer like a guest that has worn out her welcome, not yet anyway.
Summer you have given us your all this year, and it’s one that won’t soon be forgotten. So I’m going to continue to embrace the open windows and the warm nights, the ice cream and the iced lattes. There have been too many things in my life and that of those around me lately that have reminded me that I’m all the wiser to never will a day away. From run-of-the-mill life challenges that are just tough, to true tragedies… Endless grief. Endless tears. Endless questions.
Yes, I will likely be fortunate enough to enjoy a beautiful fall, then Christmas, then yet another spring and summer and so on…. But who am I to treat any day as less than a unique gift, never again to be repeated? So summer of 2014, let’s continue to put this song on replay. I may remember your days as a blur of boxes and sweaty clothes and multiple showers a day, but I will most importantly remember you as a summer that changed our family’s life and brought us a lot of hard-earned solid nights of sleep, a toddler’s laughter and increasingly rapid steps, wonder and joy. For that, and for all the glorious summer sunsets, I am grateful.