Labor Day Is Not The End Of Summer
Turn on the television, read the paper, look at store displays, they will have you thinking summer is over. Seeing Instagram posts of people’s Halloween displays, wishes for “sweater weather”, and yearnings for pumpkin spice lattes is disturbing. Why are we rushing the seasons? Many of them are the same people who say, “Gosh, the years are flying by.” You are causing this. I am partially to blame because I feel guilty for keeping all the days of a season. When I wear my shorts and sandals as summer transitions into fall and I notice the chunky knits around me, I feel guilty. In my mind I yell at you, ‘Why are you wearing that sweater?’ ‘It’s summer still!’ Summer, still, three more weeks of green leaves, lush gardens, not to mention humidity. Yet, closets are being rotated as I write.
Allowing Labor Day to be labeled the ‘unofficial’ or ‘official’ end of summer just isn’t true. Take a moment to think about it. When just about all schools went back to school after Labor Day, it was easy to see the holiday as marking the unofficial end to summer. That isn’t the case any more. Many schools started weeks ago. Even colleges start back before Labor Day. To hear it called the official end of summer is even more incorrect. No, the official end of summer isn’t dictated by retail displays of autumn leaves, Halloween witches, or even the small Christmas display just behind the Thanksgiving display just behind the main autumn display, the weatherman, or the masses yearning for a pumpkin spice latte at the corner Starbucks. Nature determines the end of summer and that doesn’t happen, officially, until September 22nd. When you are thinking as you walk outside today, ‘this doesn’t feel like Fall’, it’s because it isn’t. Wear your white capris, carry your straw purse, find a pool and jump in it. It’s fine because it’s still summer for three more weeks. Savor it.
Let the sun warm your skin, complain about the humidity, turn the sprinklers on and accidentally on purpose let the water splash you. It is summer, enjoy. Watch the grass grow, fuss about the weeds taking over the garden, find a giant zucchini and make a bunch of bread, take a moment to reflect on childhood memories of pools, parks, and lakes. It is summer, immerse yourself. Let the sun, temperature, the plants around us remind us of when the seasons change. In other words, nature will tell you when to grab a sweater and head out for a seasonal beverage. We need to stop being so easily led by commercialism. Funny, that many of the very people who harp about commercialism of Thanksgiving and Christmas are the ones posting about pumpkins, flavored coffee drinks, and fall festivals. Talk about mixed signals.
Why do we allow ourselves to be convinced summer is over? Dangerous ground to walk on when we aren’t even promised the next minute. Why are we allowing ourselves to think there’s always next year? Nothing is forever that is true. Summer does come to end, everything eventually does. For that very reason, we are reminded to enjoy every day like it’s our last. What if this summer was our last? Would you enjoy every day of the season then?