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Saturday, July 1, 2017

A Fistful of Summer


Well, here we are. July. The worst of the warm weather months. It wasn't always this way, of course...

It starts out great, with the initial week's heat and humidity still a thing to get used to. The grass is still green and soft and cool underfoot, damp with dew in the early mornings.

The first few days are for laying still and listening to the birds chirp. Most everyone has the work week off heading into Independence Day. The bluey haze of the afternoon air is escorted into dusk by grilling smoke and the sound of summer's lazy laughter.

It is the month of yard sales, street festivals, high school and family reunions. The nearby lakes are, by this time, warm enough to get in. Even if they aren't, that won't stop you once Old Sol stands on top of your head in the middle of the afternoon.

We have no July birthdays in our family, just America's on the 4th. Michigan's fireworks laws are quite liberal - not like the old days - so these next few nights will be filled with shrieks and explosions emulating the terrible battles that won us our freedom, and the ones that have kept it since.

But after the show is over, and only the fireflies light up the thick nighttime air, the real July kicks in. The temperatures find a happy new perch to sit on. The cicadas start up their ceaseless droning. The lawn dries to a crunchy, toasty tan color. And each day brings us closer to the 26th.

The pressure isn't just in our heads; it's literally in the atmosphere, cooking us on low setting. This will be the second one to come around since the boy went away.

Its approach is soothed by the balm of good tidings from well-wishers near and far. Thinking of you, too. What we experience is the opposite of a buildup. The anniversary of the death of a child is a finish line you crawl to grudgingly.

Charlie lived for 4,441 days. Three weeks from this coming Wednesday, our small, shiny planet will have rotated around our dim yellow star twice since that brilliant life ended.

Once it is past, July's last five days are strictly business. End of the month. Bills to pay. Early August is no different weatherwise, but there are a few birthdays on that calendar page... August also spirals toward the new school year. Even after two years, it's too hard not to mark it that way.

pH 7.o1.17

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1 comment:

  1. Yes, as the 26th comes around the memories become more bittersweet especially with birthdays coming in August and forever one empty seat ... always missing Charlie, his giggle and his funny games with his cousins ... yes, we remember!
    :)

    ReplyDelete

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