The Best Time Of Year
There is no doubting that fall is my favorite time of the year. The heat of summer is failing, and the cold breezes of the north are beginning to blow. I wrote about the seasons of life last year and how fall always reminds me of that.
In case you missed that article, I will recap it for you. It is a breakdown of our lives into seasons of the year. In the spring, there is new life forming. Things begin to bloom and grow. It is a precursor to how summer will be once the green is there and things go into full swing. Birth to age 20 is the spring of our lives. Summer is when nature really gets to work. The animals are playing and working. Males claim territory and mating partners. Animals are also preparing for their winter stores, and the plants are forming the seeds of the next generation. Summer is our 20’s and 30’s.
Then comes fall. The work continues but begins to slow down. Plants are getting ready to cast their seeds to the ground so that the next generation can blossom and grow in its own spring. Final preparations are made for winter as animals get ready to hunker down and take life much slower. Days are shorter, so it seems everything has less time to accomplish what it is looking for; our 40’s and 50’s make up the fall of our life year.
Finally, winter arrives. The days are noticeably shorter, and the weather is colder. Life has seemingly come to a standstill as the plants go dormant and the animals settle down to live off the labor they put into life earlier in the year. Longer nights mean more rest, more time to pursue lesser pursuits. So do we, if we have done summer and fall correctly, settle down and move a little slower as we wait for the end of winter. We have more time for family, for reading, catching up on movies, or whatever else we have a desire for; 60 and up is our winter. Why more decades in winter? Sometimes winter lasts a while.
This year is no different. As I approach 40 years old, my life comes back into view quite often. The shorter days mean less time on the farm working and more time for reflection on the past year. Here lately, it means more time for reflection on the past in general, my victories and losses, my ups and downs, what I have gotten right, and what I have gotten wrong.
I think it is important for a man to have this reflection at some point in his life, but I also think that point is crucial. At 20, a man has not experienced enough of his life to be able to look back with wisdom. Oftentimes people begin summer dwelling on spring because of a terrible storm that rolls through. A tornado touched down and wiped out their world, forcing a rebuild. Such as it is with the spring weather, it’s often unpredictable.
Looking back at 60 is also not advisable. Once winter starts, there is no turning back. There isn’t enough time life to fix something that wasn’t working. There isn’t enough time to store your needs for a comfortable winter, and it leaves you often trekking through the snow seeking out a means to survive.
Fall is our best time of reflection. We can look back on spring and smile at the memory of its beauty. By now, we have endured enough storms to realize why that tornado touched down and to understand how it was an opportunity to build something new and not just a total loss. We can look back on how we spent our summer and take note of what we did right and what we did wrong.
The fall leaves us enough time to make corrections, increase our stores for winter. Solidify our bonds with mates and harvest our labors. By the time we reach fall, we have the understanding to make sense of all the other seasons and to adjust our lives accordingly. We are leaving behind what doesn’t work and building better what improves us.
So as fall gets going this year, I encourage all of you to take note of where you are in your lives and to adjust your course accordingly. If you’re still in your spring, enjoy your life. Do not worry about the storms. They come and go; this is your time to blossom.
Young and Old
20–30-year old’s, now is the time for work. It is time to build wealth as well as family. Find your mate and bond closer, have children and help them nourish their own spring. Learn from the storms of yours and build a more solid foundation. Finally, start building your stores for winter. The seasons change quickly.
Men, in the fall, it is your time to correct your past, amend the future and walk with your heads held high, knowing that you have navigated the seasons and can now begin taking stock in winter. You can lead men in their youth and respect men of old. You still have time to create and nourish. You can still build and stock.
Men of the winter, it is your time to slow down. Spread your knowledge and wisdom to the younger men and begin to enjoy the stored fruits of the year. You are our most valuable men.
It does not matter which season you are in; there is something for all of us there. And for those like me who are facing a season change, I encourage you to embrace it and walk straight into it. There are joys there that you haven’t experienced before.
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