Salute to Spouses Blog

We're excited to be blogging about the latest topics in military life. We want to keep you informed on topics such as current events, education, career advice, etc. Feel free to post comments or questions to any of our entries.
October and Transitions

By Amy Nielsen

October is a season of transitions. The Earth moves most noticeably into a darker time. The energy of the sun is significantly dimmer. The daily commute is now bookended with dawn and dusk, though not quite darkness yet. Vibrations move to a lower frequency after the height of summer - not so very long ago in August. A refreshing summer downpour is now a chilly fall drizzle. The smell of grass is replaced with that of leaves.

Fall has always been a special and difficult time for me. Until recently I have never been able to understand why. It was pointed out to me a few weeks ago that I don’t transition well. I like to plan and move from order to order. Transitions are messy. Things don’t quite follow the rules in transitions. It’s where the magic happens though. The magic is why I love this season. So, the following is my dedication to this most strange autumnal season we are experiencing.

“Seasons of change…”

Baring branches reveal nooks and crannies stuffed full of scavenged bounty. Blankets of leaves cover roots and twigs reaching up to snatch at pant cuffs. Houses so recently shrouded in deep shadows in the heat of the day now stand stark white against pine studded woods. After the heavy drenching humidity of summer, the crisp dryness opens the lungs to sweet wood smoke tinged with the last bit of skunk. It is not quite deep autumn but it is certainly not the thundering oscillations of September.

Or at least that’s the way it is supposed to be.

This year the expected shift is strangely murky. It feels like someone left the shower on hot and you walked in just after the steam. But it smells wrong for it to be this hot. I can’t wear my hoodie without sweating. Forget cute little boots. I want to be in shorts and a cami. I keep forgetting to make dinner until it is way too late. Dusk says it’s five o’clock and time to start dinner, but my skin says it’s more like three o’clock.

I’m waking at 4 a.m. in a full-on drive to work hard on something, anything. But once I get going I can’t concentrate. I lose it somewhere around the twinkle of the dawn star. The magic that permeates everything feels a bit out of kilter. Like somehow the universe is canted at an angle and atoms are sliding off s-rings.

I have felt this shift happening over the last few years. Most especially the year of “Sprinter” - 2015 when we had virtually no snow and exceptionally high temperatures. It was at that point that I noticed that everything was happening three months late. The march has continued along a pace slowly but surely reaching fingers into other seasons with unexpected snow storms in May and 80-degree days in mid-October.

I’m not quite sure how to process this mess we seem to find ourselves in. This sticky sweat seems to drip off every sentence along with so many beads off my water bottle. Emotions are running high and deep and so fast that it takes a lark to catch the mood. We gathered our harvest from summer yet the forsythia has started to bloom again.

This transition time is often fraught with turbulence. The cracks seem to grow as the energy of the world moves down to the roots. The reds and oranges of the newly turned leaves blaze a deep connection to the root turning the mind inward. Heart strings pluck as the light softens and mellows.

I feel the need to gather my loved ones in and have dear souls near my hearth. To make a space and place for each one. To give a piece of ground to them to hold to in the swelling chaos. This mixed up season of transition has the wild ones restless. Pulling seeds from my herb plants has become a ritual of gratitude.

It feels like someone is deliberately tuning in to static snow on an old tv. I can’t quite make out the picture on the screen and I hear three voices all speaking in tongues. Is this reality we are living in or some sort of strange, cast off screenplay from the early sixties, or maybe it was the mid-eighties. Times are universally stomach-wrenchingly, flipity-flopping.

This dissonance between the heat permeating where cold should be, storms when there would be calm, and building frequency at crosshairs with ebbing vibrations is unbearable. This tension is causing a friction like that of a tectonic plate and I feel the shift as heavily as Sisyphus and his rock. This theme of pushing against all odds, this hounding drive forward should be receding like the tide on a beach everyday a little farther away. Opening the expanse of glorious possibility before us.

As this autumn of transition rips through my reality, I wait in wonder for the time of winter, of seed, of deep cleansing whiteness shrouding spirit. Waiting and watching for the cardinal bursting in flight like a heart from a slingshot out of the evergreen shrub. He will be touch stone, the through line from these turbulent transitions in this most magical of times.

Sitting in October drenched in hot mist of decay. Holding fast for the penetrating freeze of deep abiding winter. Waiting for the first blush of springtime buds.

Have you ever noticed that spring is pink not green?

For Military Spouses
Apply for the Salute to Spouses scholarship today and begin your education! You’ll be on the way to your dream career.

Salute to Spouses Scholarship Recipients