Okay, I’ll confess- I got cocky and confident. I thought I had this Mid-West weather thing all figured out. See, what I’ve been doing is checking my weather app at least once or twice a day. It’s pretty accurate and so when Team Jackson attended our first Cardinals baseball game this past week, I knew it would be a cool evening in the 60’s. We all had our sweaters and I even took umbrellas just in case and we did get rained out at the top of the 6th inning and it was okay because it was 8 p.m. on a school night and we needed to get home anyways. Silly, silly me thinking I had this whole weather thing under control.
Fast forward to this morning. When I checked the weather app last night, it didn’t show rain until at least the middle of next week. I set out for my usual Saturday morning walk. I looked up at the sky and thought- hmmm – well it is a little overcast but it should be fine. Walked for about 30 minutes with a little drizzle and I’m thinking well there are a lot of trees and if it should perhaps rain a little harder I could always run for cover under the trees. But then- BAM! From one minute to the next, it completely poured down on me. There was no warning. No rain one minute and then complete downpour the next. I tried finding a tree- I really did but I had no idea that rain could come down so hard in such a short amount of time. I finally found a solid, broad tree and huddled over my phone under my shirt. My phone! That’s all I cared about. I thought to myself how in the world will I get home? I’m literally trapped under this tree and I’m getting wetter and wetter by the minute. The wierd thing too is that when it downpours like that- all you see is white mist everywhere and all of a sudden you feel like you are in an episode of the Walking Dead and you are the last person left alive- no cars, complete quiet except rain. Then I thought- I’m not going out like that – I need to keep moving. I started to run- running through the muddy puddles, through wet grass, under huge trees, split-splat, split-splat, my running shoes sounding like sponges, every part of my body slicked down by the rain, cell phone now in the safest place I could think of – my bra. My chest hurt, my legs not so much. I just kept going- running and my body completely sopping wet- water in every crack and crevice of it. And the whole time I’m thinking this is so darn funny. If it had not rained, I would not have run this morning. If I had looked at the weather app this morning, I wouldn’t have come out here. I simply did not know that there was even a possibility of rain today. No idea whatsoever because I did not check the app. Because sometimes in life- you forget to check the app! It’s impossible to predict and know everything. To stay on top of everything. It might drive you mad. The thing about this Mid-West weather is it is completely unpredictable and the other thing is that you need to just learn to roll with it, just like LIFE!
The birds have already flown south for the winter. I didn’t believe it at first. But in the last week I have watched the back yard for the many finches and cardinals that we saw when we first arrived a mere four weeks ago and it’s really true. They are gone. In case you have not heard- according to the Farmer’s Almanac – that predictor of all seasons and weather patterns- it is expected to be an extremely cold winter across the U.S. Wah wah. More unpredictability to be sure.
We are on the cusp of the season changing. I may never have seen a season change but all the signs are there and I just can’t quite believe it. It seems too early by my California standards. We should be headed into an Indian summer- the hottest months of the year but instead I’m faced with a slight coolness in the air and changing leaf colors.
Soccer season has begun and this time we’ve got a new player in the house! Ms. I. After many years of waiting by the sidelines at her brothers’ many sports practices it’s our sweet girl’s turn. It’s been fun shopping with her- picking pink cleats and pink socks and pink water bottles. So different than her brothers this one. At her first practice, she came over to the sidelines, proclaimed she was too tired and asked to sit down. Mind you, this was halfway through the practice. We shall see how the soccer season goes.
It’s been a quiet week. Our big waffle weekend breakfasts are back. I’s arts and crafts table is set up in the kitchen entertaining her while I prep and cook dinners. C plays by himself building forts in the living room. M has picked up playing his lovely saxophone once again. We have notes of music and song wafting through our home.
We’re dipping our feet slowly into the scouting community, the lacrosse community and we have found a new church home! M will begin his confirmation program this year so from a sacrament standpoint, it will be a big year for him spiritually with retreats and lots of thoughtfulness around what it means to be a young Catholic in today’s world. I wasn’t prepared this year, for the extra parental effort that goes into a sacramental year because in California they begin the confirmation program in 9th grade, but just like everything else in my life these days, I am learning to just let it go and go with the flow. This is the way it is to be and I accept it. I can’t always check the weather app. I can’t always be in control. I can’t always accomodate for every bad thing that is going to happen to me, my husband or children. Life is completely unpredictable, with torrential rain downpours that give you no warning. And you just have to learn how to live with it. I think that’s where joy is found. In the downpours. On a Saturday morning run with a cellphone stuck between your breasts and your feet coming down straight into big, muddy puddles. I had so much fun. Seriously.