I grew up in Western Pennsylvania. Each year, around September or October, when that first 60 degree day hit, it was game over for the t-shirts. We were rocking sweater season, baby. I’m talking scarfs. Jeans. Knitted headbands. 60 degrees Fahrenheit in autumn is apple cider and jack-o-lanterns.
Conversely, each year in March or so, when the temperature first creeps to the 60s and the snow mounds disappear into the earth, we slingshot to the other extreme. We dust off the sandals and trade winter hats for ball caps. You see how far you can push your luck… is it really t-shirt weather? Either way, you can definitely wear shorts outside if you’re working out.
Seeing the temperature swing this week has brought up this idea of what 60 degrees Fahrenheit looks like. How after a summer of sticky, muggy, heat 60 degrees makes you want to toast marshmallows in the fireplace and watch Coraline under a pile of blankets. And how after a winter of shoveling snow and scraping ice and wearing boots that take 5 minutes to lace, 60 degrees makes you want to dance in a yellow sundress and eat watermelon on a picnic blanket.
So what do I make of this? When we’re living in the extremes (summers and winters), we take solace in the gentleness of a spring or a fall. I’ve been mulling over 60 degrees for a few days now and it’s brought me back to one thing:
There have been times in my life where I have been surrounded by deeply negative people. Where my environment was full of meaningless gossip and trivial conversations. And then, there have been times in my life where I was surrounded by deeply kind people. Where my environment was full of encouraging words and heartfelt actions.
You don’t necessarily notice the first environment until you step into the second. Perhaps that is what spring means to me. It’s the deeply kind environment I didn’t realize I was craving.
Maybe then, we can create within ourselves a 60 degree mindset. Where we are surrounded by the best that each season has to offer. Where we can read in a hammock in the park one moment and stir up two steaming mugs of hot chocolate the next. Where we can appreciate each season and still remain in a space of compassion and positivity.
Maybe then, we can create our own eternal spring.