What is this season we’ve been stuck in? I don’t like it. Not one bit. Well, a little bit, because I’m prone to look for that silver lining where I can. So I’m looking at the lovely green that’s saturating the outdoors, the water levels that have risen back up to their former glory… and, unfortunately in some cases, far beyond.
I just want it to be summer.
We’ve been in this weird season of storm that has replaced late spring and early summer. While there is the good, ample rain and coolish temperatures (remember that year we hit our first 100 degree day in May??) and a drought that is no more; but the bad news, as we are all aware, has been a string of giant, dangerous storms.
This horrible weather has left no Oklahoman and pretty much no American unaffected; it’s a natural disaster that has literally changed the landscape of a city once again. Friends around the country are reporting watching our weather coverage; checking in through social media and phone calls to make sure that we’re okay each time a new storm warning is issued.
With each new round that revs up, I can feel my resolve slipping, and I know I’m not alone. Like the news anchor who lost her composure on air when the weather forecast called for—guess what!?—more rain, I feel myself groaning audibly every time it’s mentioned.
I just want to be happy. I’m ready for summer.
On May 18, I spoke at a writer’s conference where I was gifted with a beautiful leather journal. It was especially meaningful to me, because on the way to the conference, I chatted with the writing club’s president and we shared our individual love for beautiful blank books (not an unusual thing for writers, an office supply fetish). I told her of my deep and abiding love for leather-bound journals and beautiful notebooks; I tend to hoard them, buy them and stash them and save them for a day when I might have something worthy to write in them.
On the morning of May 20, after the kids went off to school, I emptied out my briefcase from the conference. I sat at the kitchen table with my new leather journal, and decided to break pattern and use it as a gratitude journal. Later that day, I would come to realize just how much I have to be grateful for. How silly it is to put aside a beautiful journal and save it for a special time, when every day is special. And how fitting that this journal was stamped with the image of a wise old owl.
Today there was no rain. A few thin clouds, but mostly sunshine and cool breezes, not even those winds Oklahoma’s so famous for. We had a great dinner that included meat on the grill and a fresh fruit salad. The windows were open; we ate dinner to a soundtrack of lawnmowers and laughing, playing children. The breezes carried the smell of freshly-cut grass, a symphony of grills and the promise that maybe summer is here, after all.
I know I won’t have trouble writing in my gratitude journal tonight.