I never used to love fall. I was a spring-and-summer person, all the way. But then, you know what happened? Pumpkin Spice Lattes happened. And I discovered the previously unknown-to-me world of apple orchards and pumpkin patches. And fall became more than just the calm before the misery that is winter, it became cozy sweaters and orange hues and crisp leaves. And then it became little boys tossing leaves and and GOING BACK TO SCHOOL. Just for the record, I don’t really care for PSL. They’re fine, but not something I’d go out of my way for. But they, along with everything else, romanticized fall. And now, because I’m a 14-year-old girl in a body 5-months from turning 40, I. Love. Fall.
Fall also happens to coincide with harvest, obviously. It’s amazing to me how much things like harvest and grain prices and combines now mean to me, where 10 years ago I knew nothing, NOTHING of them. Harvest takes away my farmer, so long as rain isn’t falling, he’ll be gone from 7 until whenever he gets home at night, which is almost always past my own bedtime. In the first year of our marriage, I’d hop in a tractor or combine with him every other day or so so that we could catch up on life and visit and whatnot. In the second year, I spent early harvest riding the combine or ripper, hoping that either bumpy ride would induce labor (no luck); and the latter part of harvest in a first-time-mom-with-a-newborn stupor. And since then, I’m just the delivery girl – rather than going for the rides myself, I drive the boys out so that they can go clomping through a rough field and spent an hour or two riding in the buddy seat, sharing their Dad’s snacks and learning all about farming.
So it’s bittersweet – I become a single parent in fall, this season that I have come to love. A lucky single parent for sure, with a strong support network and caregivers for our boys. But still, it’s a rat race of sorts, one that I can often enjoy (there’s some satisfaction in getting through a full day of parenting and shuttling and working and more shuttling and dinner making and playing and bedtimes and having the house in on piece) and can sometimes get worn out by.
But still, this is my life, from now until November, and maybe December if the weather cooperates. I will make the most of it.