As we approach the summer solstice, it’s that time of year when temperatures rise. I notice that the number of comments about the heat also rises. A few weeks ago, one of my yoga teachers brought up this very topic. She continued by saying that we live here in the desert by choice, and the warm summer months are a part of that choice. Then she challenged us to a practice she’s embraced, to refrain from engaging in negative conversation about the heat. It’s similar to the practice of intention, where you put your energy into what you want to manifest in your life, rather than focusing on what’s wrong or what you don’t want to happen. I decided to give it a try.
My favorite part of the day is early morning. With the onset of warmer days, I’ve shifted my schedule so I can be out walking or hiking before 6 A.M. I approach it as a practice that gives me great joy to include in my day, before I step into my work at the Seed. It’s a time of reflection, listening to podcasts or music, and breathing in the morning air. Many days there’s almost a chill when I first step outside. I appreciate the beauty of each new morning and wonder what the day ahead will bring. The summer heat is far from my mind.
In addition to my morning walks, I signed on for an 8:00 playground shift for the summer. It’s an equally beautiful way to experience the morning. Children trickle onto the playground like water flowing from hose into sand. Parents and children say their goodbyes, and teachers greet students. Students begin their day swinging, hanging upside down on the monkey bars, and running around in the grass. Children of all ages dig and relocate sand. One girl lamented this morning that the water was stuck in one area and wasn’t flowing where she’d had it going the day before. As she began digging to open up the space, her mom said that’s how life is, always changing. Her brother piped in, “It’s like a flower. It doesn’t last long.”
I know the days will become increasingly hotter as we move into July and August. As that happens, I’m sure I’ll be tempted to make comments or complain about the heat. However, at least for now, I’m glad I have the opportunity to experience our beautiful summer mornings in the way I do. I’m hoping this practice of receiving mornings will form a foundation of appreciation for all that is good and hopeful in the world. As we continually show up to address life’s challenges, perhaps remembering the beauty of each new morning will add a bit of lightheartedness to our days ahead.