THE COLORS AND CHALLENGES OF AUTUMN (FALL - AmE)
BY FINOLA ALLEN ON 23/09/2023
The crunch of crisp leaves on the ground. Dew drops of moisture cling to every tree bark, making our hands slip on drizzly, overcast walks - but our hearts secretly light. As the tips of many people's fingers begin to get numb and varying levels of short crop tops get put back into storage - it all signals that Autumn is on the horizon, our gateway to Winter and new chances. My favorite thing about Autumn is the colors, the light, the sounds, and how it unites yet divides us. As a nation, we default back to discussing the same topic; how's the weather? For people of different nationalities or those living in other countries - we must seem so dull and boring. But for us Brits in the UK, it's our way of complaining collectively, or rejoicing, when the temperature outside is more than 10 degrees… Cups of tea and coffee get drunk year-round, and we huddle together whatever the skies decide - it's like our second universal language. Even children and young people join in, moaning at their schools and nurseries. It misses no one out.
You can't deny that even though our seasons bring us complaints and hardship, there's also a fair share of positives too. Cozy knit jumpers, pumpkin spiced hot chocolates, fleece pajamas, fuzzy socks, movie marathons - the promise of Christmas in a few month's time - dare I say it (!) Whatever you love the most, there's something about the nights drawing gradually in that makes you appreciate the little things and the people you value the most. Without life shedding its skins and time passing - the world would be static. Nothing would ever happen to excite or thrill us enough to keep us waking up and being productive with our days. Mental health and well-being can get severely affected during the season change. With many of us getting diagnosed with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder), that just proves that the way we act, think, and feel can be determined by the state of our environment along with its weather. If you feel like you are struggling as we begin to go into this process - reach out to professionals and visit your local GP or doctor for help or advice. It might be that you are experiencing other conditions that have been worsened (or masked by) the shift in temperature- so it's important to be open and honest in order for them to demystify your issues.
In the meantime, try to shape your perspective on what this season used to make you do and change it. For example, if you used to choose hibernation and moody behavior, perhaps journal briefly about what you want to get out of the colder weather and share it with others to make it happen. Social interaction is key to human happiness, after all! Lastly, embrace all of nature's magic as it comes. The beginning of Autumn only happens once a year, don't forget!