Maybe next year

The nights are longer than the days now. It happens every year, but it always surprises me when I have to get up and it is not daytime yet, not even dawn. The last few days have been perfectly autumnal: crisp and clear, with frosty nights and afternoons warm enough to go barefoot outdoors if one is really determined to do so. Another hard freeze and it will be time to clean the garden debris and fervently promise that Next Year I Will Do Something With That Corner. Maybe next year it will be different.

We are in the scraggly orange fringe end of Foliage Season, and the dreaded Holiday Season looms ahead. I would rather spend the midwinter gloom curled up someplace warm with a mug of something warm and a good book or at least a good internet connection. It is the season of the year when demands – on time, on effort, on money, on emotional resilience – are high and opportunities for recharge are limited; I often look around after all the work is done and I’m ready to finally relax, only to find that the season’s over and it’s time to get back to work. Maybe this year it will be different.

I am sitting with the potential for different and new. Change is threatening, it always is, but I’m starting to ease into the idea. One of these years I will be able to put in my garden in the spring, because I will not be employed at a cube job. One of these years I will plant my garden somewhere else entirely, because the long-term consequence of the choices I am making is that eventually I will not be living here. This place I call home now will be where I am from, like the other places I have called home before it. One of these years it will all be different; possibly a lot sooner than I planned.

I am in a gentler place than I have been for a long while. It is good.

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