It is the harvest season. Autumn brings with it a lot of activity. We plan at the New Year, plant seeds in the spring, and nurture them through the summer. Now, we reap the results of all the hard work. Sometimes, we mourn the loss that comes with failed efforts, bad turns, and unexpected happenstance. Regardless of the outcome, we reset and do it all over again, year after year after year. Thus is life.
This autumn feels different. My ambition resulted in a few goals being met. Despite my hard work, other pieces were derailed. My confidence has been strengthened, shaken, and restored again just as quickly. It has been a hard, difficult journey. There are few parts of my life that I have not been forced to re-evaluate. At times, there were many roads from which to choose. At others, every path seemed blocked. I feel as though my actions and reactions are consistently out of sync with each occurence.
On this particular day, autumn also brings us the “magic” of a midterm election. Politics become harder to ignore. The timbre of news media is heavily tinged with opinion, often through story selection. Depending on your source preference, you are likely only getting one point of view. We are screamed at, threatened, and scared into following one course or another. This harvest season, we are not just reaping what we have sown, but on that which others wish us to focus.
The combination of personal, internal conflict and carefully meted media tales is a weight that can be difficult to bear. For the first time in a very long time, I feel like what is happening at a national level is having a direct impact on my daily life. It is neither the politicians nor the journalists that are to blame. It is the fostered sense that you and I, as individuals, should either agree wholeheartedly or swear off the other’s opinions as being simply wrong.
An early morning walk to my backyard, to this amazing sunrise, provided a stark reminder. We can be polar opposites and still find a way to not only live peacefully with one another, but we can create art together. Part of what makes America so great is the way we, as individuals, make our contrasting differences blend together into marvelous scenes like this sunrise.