I love spring, sorry if your allergies are a mess. So many words for the different kinds of rain we get; Sprinkles, drizzle, downpour, misting, shower, drip, deluge, light rain, rain bursts, heavy rain, fat rain (that’s what I call rain mixed with snow) and sideways rain.
Being in education, whether as a student or teacher, I have likened the course of the school year to running a river.
In the beginning, during summer and early fall, you prepare. Get out the map, read the books, talk with experts, make plans, and prepare your gear. Excitement and anticipation build, and then it’s go time. Launching into the water/class schedule, taking in the scenery, making slight course adjustments and relishing every second. The newness of the place and people. The thrill of learning, rafting, floating. The “ah ha” moments.
In the middle, winter, you’re in the middle of the river. It’s often cold and wet and a bit of uncertainty. Yet you’re cruising along. No doubt some mishaps and misadventures have occurred. You’ve learned and grown and are still looking forward to the rest of the journey. And for just a while, you feel you’ve hit your groove. Hands on the oars comfortably, calmly and confidently looking ahead, ready for the next rapid. The sound of the river or road ahead gets a bit louder. You squint and turn your head, listening and looking for what’s to come.
Then the tumult, spring, you’re in the rapids. You’ve prepared, you have experience now, you take a breath and hold on. When the waves are crashing and the rock walls seem close, it’s a little too intense to notice the scenery, smell the greenery and contemplate what is past or future. You’re fully engaged in the present. Trying to only focus on what is in front of you, yet keeping your eyes upon the horizon. Thrilling, exhausting, loud, scary, and awesome. Turbulent emotions and motions to get through the rocky parts.
That’s how I feel. It’s spring and I’m holding on. Hanging on and hanging in. I am simultaneously planning for next fall and the next adventure, yet fully aware that right now is also so important. The air around me is full of excitement of energy for graduation, possible jobs, summer break, moving on. There’s also the fear of what’s next and the unknown. There are forks ahead in the river or road and you’re trying to make the right or best decision. Frozen 2 said it best, “All one can do is the next right thing.”
Now’s the time for a deep breath. Really deep. Hold it a few seconds. Slowly exhale. Calm your thinking. Slow your heart rate. Be present. Be aware. Right now in this second, just be and keep holding on.