I spent many years very much disliking the fall season. When I was 13, my Grandfather, who had been like a father to me before my Mom remarried my stepfather when I was 7; passed away in the fall. Before his death, I remember I had a series of dreams that were hurtful. I dreamed several times about his death, but in each of them, I was comforted. I sometimes believe that was Gods way of preparing me for his death, and showing me that life would continue after him, and that I would be okay. The most prominent of the dreams was the one at the cemetery. I dreamed this in the summer- that we were at the gravesite. I stared at his headstone with his name carved on it, and I remember seeing the leaves trickle past the bottom of it. A few months later... I remember standing there with Grandmother. I remember the cool breeze, the painted leaves, and the gravestone. Every fall, I used to remember that dream, and it broke my heart.
In 2012, I was in a place in my life that I knew I had to change. I had began actively battling the depression that had plagued me for years, and I decided that I was going to let fall come, and rather than seeing it as death and a time of mourning... I would find the good that came with the fall. Since we had became our own family, my husband and children, we had intentionally never celebrated Halloween. So we did steer clear of all of the 'death' associated with the season, but that year I really remember deciding to find good in fall.
That year I remember taking my kids to the Homecoming parade and feeling the coolness in the air. I remember breathing it in and feeling how cool it was, how refreshing. I remembered falls past, before my memories were plagued, with piles and piles of leaves... rushing into them as a child. I raked them up for my kids and they played, threw leaves, and enjoyed life...
Little by little, I sorted out the good fall memories from the hurtful ones... and decided that this beautiful, colorful season... where we pull out the boots and put up the flip flops.. was not a time to mourn summer, but a time of Harvest, a time to gather all of the summer memories and enjoy them.
So finally, after years of overcoming, I can enjoy fall... and say that I have a few favorite things, too many to choose just one!
The cool air... boots and jackets.... quilts and socks... cinnamon and pumpkin scented candles... pumpkin pies!... all things apple... football.... staying in and reading books together... sipping yummy hot drinks... chili and soup.... and sweet, chilly memories!