Monday, September 16, 2013

Fall Melancholy

(Alabama, November 2012)

The shift from summer to fall always brings an inexplicable sadness with it. I love all the traditional trappings of the season - football, tailgate parties, pumpkin everything, the colors, the sense of possibility, the absolutely beautiful weather. But even as I revel in these things, something in me grieves a little. Yes, nature going out in a blaze of glory is a sort of sorrowful beauty, but it's more than that. Maybe it's just the passage of time, which I feel even more now than at the New Year. Maybe this is why the Old Testament year turns in fall.

September and November are also riddled with milestones for me. I'm aware, in a way I'm not at other times, that I'm still experiencing life's highs and lows alone and that this might always be the case. I honestly have no idea where I'd find the time and energy to start a relationship - I can't even manage my schedule now. But it's disheartening to have so much to give, so much you want to share, and year after year no one wants or even sees the light in you. Invisibility is hard. All of us, women and men, just need to be seen once in a while. Organically. Ontologically.

Still, I know that this is just fall melancholy. I have no feelings of impending doom about the coming months, which is a blessing. I have an increased sense of hope about other parts of my life, and we'll just see what God does before winter arrives.


  1. Maybe this is why the Old Testament year turns in fall.

    We continue to observe this in the Orthodox Church. Our Ecclesiastical New Year begins on September 1. Seems off the top of my head, although I don't have them all memorized, that our hymns for the season are reflective of what it means for the natural world and how that mirrors human lives.

    And coming to a portion of the calendar that particularly reminds you of things as an individual person (rather than just a member of the race or someone experiencing the seasons on the whole) can make your feelings surge or rise and fall with the memories--even if you're not thinking about them. We get so much of our affective experience from these things. We move through the seasons, and yet we never are stuck in just one instant in time. All of our times resonate with us, at some moments a great deal more than others.

    Nice post.

    1. Thanks for commenting! Yes, we're all the sum of our experiences.

  2. I think I always worry about fall because it's just before winter and the winter time is where the daylight is low and the days are shorter and it's so easy to feel depressed and tired all the time. I try to hang onto the days of autumn knowing that winter's coming and I'll have to make it through the dreariness there before we can get to spring :)