Friday, September 21, 2018

The Changing of Seasons

Written by  Catherine 'Cat' Renneberg

The other day I found myself genuinely angry at the weather. Now I consider myself a pleasant person; more than once I have been accused of being “too optimistic” or “naively happy” or just straight up “annoying” as a result of my glass-half-full approach to life. But the other day was different. I went outside, smelled the crisp air of almost below zero and saw with surprise that the leaves were no longer green, and felt immediately cheated. I realized that this year, there would be no gentle transition from summer to fall, fall to winter. No. Our days with light cardigans and fiery leaves are numbered. With the farmer’s almanac calling for a long and cold winter, I am bracing myself for a rude awakening back to the reality of Saskatchewan living.

You see, this is my first autumn back to Saskatchewan after spending two years in St. Stephen, New Brunswick. While, yes, I did experience part of the Saskatchewan winter as I moved back to Saskatoon mid-December, it is only now that I have realized the distinct difference between autumn on the east coast and autumn in the prairies – that is, that there IS a season of autumn in the east coast! The official date for autumn is September 22nd – the very day that Saskatchewan is expecting snow!

So there I was, standing outside my car in a mix of disbelief and irritation, when I realized that this truly is the changing of seasons for me, in many ways besides the fact that I have now turned the heat on in my apartment. The flurry of newness and excitement has settled, and now it is up to me to continue to find excitement among the routine and responsibilities.

 

This season marks the first fall since Kindergarten that I am not going back to school. That my learning is now self-lead might be one of the hardest adjustments for me. I have traded in the textbooks and essays for life experience, books of my own choosing, and the occasional webinar or documentary. I have had to surrender my love for full time academia to God, trusting that this new season of youth ministry and life in Saskatoon is what He is asking of me right now.

And that’s not to say that I do not find joy in my life right now. Holy Family has been amazing and I am so excited to see the work that God will do in me and for me this year! But it does come with a bit of nostalgia for life as a student, life in New Brunswick, and many other past realities.

That being said, whether it is an early winter, unexpected life circumstances, or just a dreary day, I cannot help but feel God beckoning me a little closer to Him, asking me to look to Him and trust. I know that glancing back to memories is important, but I also have to choose to look forward, bracing myself not only for the snow, but also for the good that is to come.

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