Balancing on the Fulcrum

This heat sure is zapping any energy I might otherwise have had. I still do my early morning yard chores, but the effort required to slog my way through the heat leaves me without any resources for the rest of the day. Even when I’m finished and am inside with the air conditioner going, I can still feel that lack of interest in doing anything. Except for reading, of course. That I can do anywhere or at any time, though I have to admit, few books can hold my interest enough to keep me awake for very long. Naps anyone?

It’s times like this when I can feel the pendulum swing of life. Here we are, stuck in a slough of over 100-degree temperatures, but it wasn’t that long ago when the temperatures were dipping below 0 on the Fahrenheit scale. On a day-to-day basis, the pendulum of the seasons might not seem as if it is moving, but it is. In another six months, we’ll be back to those frigid temperatures.

Another pendulum I could feel today is the one that regulates how I feel about my yard and the work I’m putting into it. A few months ago, I was enchanted with the way everything looked and how everything was going. Now I am definitely unenchanted (meaning the enchantment is at an end) though the pendulum hasn’t yet swung all the way to disenchanted (meaning disillusionment and disappointment). And perhaps the pendulum might not swing that far. My love affair with my garden was a shallow one, based entirely on its looks. As the old flowers and plants die off and late-bloomers blossom, and as (perhaps) the rather bleak look of midsummer desiccation gives way to a more robust autumn look when cooler temperatures favor cool-temperature plants, such as New England asters, chrysanthemums, and my grass, then I might become enchanted again. If not, there’s always next spring and the inevitable pendulum swing.

I try not to be too influenced by wild pendulum swings because life is so much more comfortable on the fulcrum. I do, as much as possible, try to remain emotionally centered without going to extremes of moods. (Grief was an aberration, an insane one-sided, one-way swing of the pendulum of life, though even then, I tried to find whatever balance I could.) Still, even centered as much as possible on the fulcrum, small daily mood changes can seem immense when influenced by the out-of-my-control swings of nature.

And especially when the heat wipes me out, leaving me without the energy to balance on the fulcrum.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

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