A Pumpkin Candle in July
Updated: Aug 1, 2018
So the last couple of weeks have been a bit depressing for me. Could be because my children have been with their dad and my eldest is away at college camp. It’s just me and my husband in a big, lonely house. We keep ourselves busy. We work like crazy, watch movies, even tackle projects we normally wouldn’t tackle the rest of the year, like organizing the messy garage, painting the trim, or sorting through boxes of photos. The other day I broke out crying for no apparent reason (the day before the full moon) and I realized it’s because of the loneliness that summer brings me.
I know so many look forward to summer, especially if you’re a teacher, but for me, summer means stifling heat and humidity, seeing photos of others’ gorgeous European vacations I wish I could be on, endless gray rains and thunderstorms (I like these, even though they contribute to my sadness), and no structured work days. The kids get bored, I don’t have enough money to buy them new bikes, adventures, or to set them up with any fun activities for three months. As a result, the days just drag and drag. And because I'm a freelancer, I end up waking up late, since the kids sometimes are not here. Even when they are, they stay up late (teens) and wake up even later. I get to work, stay up writing well into the night, then repeat the next day. Sometimes I get work done, sometimes I don’t. It’s endless. And boring. And I can’t wait to get mid-July to end of August over with already.
But then, Bath & Body has to go and introduce their fall line in July.
While I don’t normally rush out to greet the new pumpkin-scented stuff right away, because I always feel the need to respect the seasons, this fall-obsessed woman couldn't wait. I needed a pick-me-up. I told my husband after we dropped off a bunch of things at the dump, we needed to stop by. For a change of pace, color, and attitude, because my sanity depended on it. Curtis was happy to, because Curtis is happy to do anything that makes me happy. :) Walking into the store, I was a little disappointed to find that my local Bath & Body hadn’t put out all their fall products yet, only a few in a small, quiet section. The store was still packed with coconut this and that, rose blah blah, and golden sunshine meep meep. But next door, at White Barn candle shop, autumn was in full swing.
My feet moved by themselves in the direction of the fall candles and soaps (I found them at White Barn, not Bath & Body…weird).
I don’t know what it is about autumn that lights my soul the way it does. Miami hasn’t experienced fall in the last twenty years, so that might be why. Since global warming, we haven’t seen summer’s dying embers giving way to cool, crisp nights. We used to. When I was a kid growing up in the 70s and 80s, the start of the school year always brought with it a change in season. Not anymore. Now, kids go back to school while it’s still roaring hell outside with a chance of hurricane warnings.
So you can understand how happy my heart feels when I start seeing those sweet pumpkin candles in the stores. Not the crappy $2 ones you see at some places, but the good ones packed with essential oils. It's not really about the candle itself--it's about ringing in the new year, setting a tone of warmth, love, family, fun, and togetherness.
So, there they were...candles. Pumpkin Pecan Waffle, Caramel Apple, Blueberry Pancakes, Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin (my fav), among others. They weren’t on sale and you know how expensive each candle can be ($24.50 retail), so I almost walked out of the store, happy only to have glimpsed them, when my husband said, "Go ahead and get one. It'll make you happy." You would have to dive way way back into my life and repressed memories to understand why that was meaningful to me. Curtis has always understood that sometimes, we just need a little something to pick us up in times when we're down. In the past week alone, he's made sure I get a nice bubble bath, foot massages, and now this $24 candle. Yes, it's expensive. Yes, it's just a candle. Trust me, I know. But a small thing can go a long way, so here I am with a smile on my face.
We drove home, me feeling like a little kid who just got a new video game.
And now I write this as a thunderstorm rolls on by next to my Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin candle, and all is right with the world. It’s only a hint, a touch of what’s to come, but it’s a sign that tells me to hang on just a little while longer. Summer is almost over. I can do it. I can wait until the season is here—the season to fill a bowl with apples and place it on the dining table, to make butternut and pumpkin soups with apple cider, sprinkle with nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon and open up the windows to let that cool air in. To throw Halloween parties and cook up a storm from November through December. No, I won’t write a fully geeked-out love letter to HallowThanksMasKah just yet, because it’s only July 30th. I will try and enjoy summer for its laidback laziness, but make no mistake—I’m itching for it to be over already.
So, for now, I’ll take advantage of the quiet time, plan a trip for next summer, so I won’t feel like the only person stuck at home instead of enjoying the outside world, and dream of the days ahead. The little touch of burnt orange in the new candle has my home feeling warm and inviting already. But I’ll be a good girl and wait, because every season has its blessings, and this witchy woman’s favorite time of year is right around the corner.
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