Early Tuesday morning I sat in the dentist chair, looking out large windows into the overcast skies looming over the valley. I noticed a heron perched on top of the building in front of me. It was a color study in grey. Monday was the autumn equinox, and our shifting weather matched the change of season.
Generally, I’m sad when summer ends, despite the heat. It’s always the time of year when I feel most free to be myself, a time when there are at least a few days near the ocean or at least a lake. This summer was different, with more challenges than usual, but also with one particular joyful surprise. It felt longer than usual, and I was grateful for Monday’s seasonal transition.
As I waited for my dentist to begin drilling, I wondered about the heron. It certainly seemed like a sign. Later, I looked up the symbolism of a heron, and I found that in some traditions the heron:
• invites us to look deeper into aspects of our lives
• asks us to become more self-reliant
• reminds us to ground ourselves regularly
• encourages us to find unconventional ways to be productive
• suggests finding ways to do the things you love in life
The grey skies and lower temperatures, like the heron, draw us into autumn and all the things we love in life at this time of year. Our tie-dye event later today is the first of our fall happenings. We look forward to seeing the children and families working together to create new beautiful shirts. On Monday students are invited to wear their new shirts in celebration of our new year and season.
In the weeks ahead, preparations will be underway for our annual Halloween carnival. It’s our biggest school-wide project and requires help from the greater community, staff, our APA committee, students, and parents. The carnival is our hallmark celebration of autumn, and draws people from all over the valley, including many of our alumni families. It’s a lot to hold space for as we transition our village through these seasonal events we love. And it’s worth every minute of all the hard work it takes to make it all happen.