Wednesday, September 19

Fall Fire

Now that it's September I feel like I ought to accept the fact that fall is imminent. It isn't something I like doing. Normally I approach the season like a Chicagoan approaches chilly winter wind gusts, I pull my coat tighter around me, my hat down, and mutter about the miserable weather under my breath. But, this year I'm trying ardently to accept autumn.

I didn't used to hate fall. Fall was when Paige and Grant and I picked out pumpkins at stands with our mom, when the three of us would rake in giant piles of leaves to jump in. When school would start and we would board our buses. When we would make bonfires in our yard and my sister and I would stay out late with Steffi playing pioneers until the night pushed us back inside to our beds.

And then there was Halloween! It ranked up there with Christmas in our family, and I have a strong suspicion it was my brother's favorite holiday. Some of my favorite memories of him are me dressing him like a vampire and teaching him how to bite and show his fangs, draping a giant pumpkin costume over his wheelchair, or encouraging the monsters in the Children's Museum's Haunted House to jump out at us. Grant loved haunted houses. Scary masks. Dark turns. Everything. He squealed with delight over it all. Maybe it wasn't so scary because he couldn't hear the creepy music. Or maybe he was just one brave kid. (I tend to think it was more of the later).

(That's Grant super excited.)

We had giant Halloween parties at our house each year and decorated the garage and basement with out own haunted maze. It was awesome.

But I also have this other memory of fall. I was at a friend's house in high school. Sitting by a bonfire and watching the flames dance and ashy embers float to the sky. I was so fixated on that fire--I think maybe I was trying to chase away all the darkness that hung over my heart. Grant was getting worse, and I was constantly being called home because it might be his last night. I watched the flames and just sat.

Time seemed to stop.

Then I got another call to come home. When Jk and I walked inside the house, I was told that my brother had died.

I spent my October at a funeral and in a whirl of crunchy dead leaves and burnt out bonfires.

So that's my issue with fall. Everything dies, and the warmth gets taken out from the air around you. It's not really the season's fault, but I have such a hard time getting through those months that once seemed so alive. I try to rush through to winter when everything lays peaceful in a blanket of white until it comes to life again.

This year I'm trying, though. I'm trying to meander through fall slowly once again. To lay in leaves and sip warm drinks and think about fun October nights with witches and bats and pumpkins a plenty. I'm going to try to let that fall fire fill me again.

And if you can, pray that I get filled with the sort of fire that never goes out.

1 comment:

  1. My dear Megan,

    You write so beautifully. Thank you for letting me catch a glimpse of your heart through this entry. I ache for you to be filled with the fire that you spoke of - I will be carrying you in prayer.