Goodbye, Summer. And Good Riddance
When those last days of summer approach I’m usually caught off guard and overcome with a sense of wistfulness and melancholy. Goodbye summer? But how? It only just started? At least it feels that way. Not this year. Not ever again, I fear. This Labour Day Weekend I’m not afraid to declare, “Goodbye, Summer. You sucked. Just like the rest of this stupid year. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”
Past summers were tough but there was always some fun tossed in the mix. As a working mom it was usually a blur of camp drop offs and (late) pick-ups (just who gets off work at 4pm every day anyway?!) but always plenty of ice cream and lake visits and sometimes a bit of travel, too. This year, thanks to changing work schedules and family illness, it was just the blur of drop offs and pick ups. There was still ice cream, but it didn’t taste as sweet. There were still lake visits, but they were wrought with anxiety. But we got a puppy, who keeps us busy and active. I actually shudder to think of where we’d be if we didn’t get him.
We get by in the day to day knowing we have a lot. So much. More than most. But it’s tentpoles and goal posts like this that make me realize how much we’ve lost — both the collective we and we as in my individual family. We worked hard to stay healthy, both mentally and physically. In both cases we did well and we didn’t. We worked hard to be grateful and mindful. This is not always easy. But beating yourself up for not appreciating what you have because others have it worse just makes you feel worse, too. There is no winning in the suffering Olympics.
Here’s what I know. This year, I feel unhappy saying goodbye summer because it feels like summer never really began. Part of me wishes this whole year so far was just a bad dream. Summer is over and I’m not mad about it. But Fall and its cozy sweaters and pumpkin spice can go F itself, too.
So don’t feel bad saying goodbye summer. And don’t feel bad dreading fall and back to school, either. Things are hard right now and pretending they aren’t makes them feel harder. Acknowledge they are hard. We can do hard things. Do whatever you need to so you can get through the day and sleep (hopefully) through the night.
Eat ice cream but take vitamins.
Don’t bother mopping the floor but find the time for a nice long shower.
Say good riddance to summer and don’t feel the need to embrace fall.
Hug your kids and tell them you love them.
“It will all be ok in the end. And if it’s not ok, it’s not the end.” (I wish I knew who to attribute this quote to, but it’s one of my favourite inspirational quotes to get through tough times.)