Life is full of seasons, even in sunny northern California.
Which is remarkable.
Maybe we don't get all that cold here in Sacramento, but some mornings are below freezing and I know for a fact, we'll have days this summer hovering close to 110 degrees.
But, life is full of emotional and spiritual seasons, too. Change, growth, loss, newfound passions, love, or jobs. All of this is -- and will be -- a part of our lives, whether we like it or not and whether we admit it or not.
The latest season of mine has felt difficult, for lack of better wording. Maybe the hardest it's been since I had a my first born, over seventeen years ago. Back then, I felt alone and was dealing with a huge responsibility that I knew nothing about -- raising a child!
Today, there's me pursuing writing, which is always a constant struggle (Am I good enough?)
There's me wondering how I let go of my son who will be graduating high school next year. (I don't want to let go.)
There's me dealing with things all women go through, like comparison or "not being enough," in any and all categories. (I'm getting old!)
There's marriage. There's kids. There's work. There's life. There's emotions. There's heartbreak. There's loneliness. There's so many things we deal with. And there's many things people think I don't have to deal with because I don't talk about them.
But, they're there. They're always there.
And I deal with things some women don't have to deal with. Thin-shaming, being one of them. I've never talked about this, and I may never again, but ladies ... this is a real thing. Stop putting down thin women just because you don't look like them.
Appearance is another issue. Women assume I have a perfect life solely based on the way I look.
I'm not kidding.
I was literally told the other day by a woman, "You are pretty. You must have a perfect life."
I wanted to laugh. Then cry. Are you kidding me? So, because you think I look perfect, I have a perfect life? Oh, the irony. And hilarity. And bewilderment.
Do you know how many people women -- or men -- won't talk to me because of the way I look? Most days, I feel alone more than anything. But I know most people feel this way. We all have things we deal with that creates an illusion of isolation from the rest of everyone.
But, it's an illusion. Because we're never really alone.
This morning's walk with the pup put me right back in the perfect frame-of-mind. When I'm in nature, I feel one with God. I see him everywhere, full and in color, from the tips of the trees, to the herons flying, to the neighbors I say hi to. He's everywhere.
And I know I'm not alone, by any means. He's walking right next to me. He'll never leave or forsake me, and now more than ever, I'm leaning in to that. And there's my puppy. My furry best friend who's a constant, loving companion. What more do I need?
Seasons are seasonal. Some start out amazing and end in turmoil. Some begin with sorrow and end joy-filled. The real trick is to look for hope, stay grateful, and watch things change for our good despite our circumstances.
And remember, anything is possible for us who believe. (Mark 9:23).