I’m sitting on my porch with The Byrds crooning in my head as I write this. My favorite season is fast approaching: chilly nights and sun-warmed days, fall colors, and football when the good guys in black, orange, red, white, green, and gold win (we won’t argue about how those colors go together). Having lived in the midwest my whole life, I love to see each season arrive. And usually by the end of it, I’m equally eager to see it go…except for fall. Every year the colorful leaves can linger, the mums can bloom, and the snow and ice can stay away just a little longer.
While I embrace the earth’s changing seasons, I often forget that human lives are a succession of seasons as well. My seasons of formal education, career-building, and family-building are likely similar to many. If I had to guess, home-emptying will follow, but I’m learning (seemingly much slower than the average person) not to speculate.
And although I knew vaguely that each of these seasons would eventually end, all of them felt interminable at times in the beginning, middle, and even the end. I entered each of these seasons determined to conquer it…to ace the class, to be the best in my field, to create and birth healthy babies, to raise the smartest, kindest, most well-rounded kids. And truthfully I nailed a lot of it. I failed a lot of it too. I took courses that seemed to challenge me beyond my capabilities (does anyone REALLY understand statistics?!). I lost two babies before my body figured out how to nurture the three I was meant to have. Some days I feel like a rockstar parent (when my kids all leave the house with teeth brushed, more than one food group in their bellies, their homework done, and kind words for each other), and sometimes I miserably fail (when we can’t find our shoes and climb into the car full of dog hair, yelling at each other, and eating pop tarts…with dirty teeth).
My best memories come from every one of these seasons, as do the cringe-worthy ones. Somehow these seasons continue to blend into each other, and I’m in the next one before I know I left. In my nostalgic hindsight, the previous seasons all cast a rosy glow as new challenges make the old one feels so comfortable. Somehow this season of healthy parents, kids who still listen to me occasionally and give me kisses every night (don’t tell them I told you), and a part time job that feels more like a hobby, feels like fall. I’m not quite sick of it yet. But like the beauty of the first snowfall lures us into winter, the sudden freedom of independent kids who are in school all day is luring me into the next season.
After a whirlwind of babies, preschool, and school volunteering, I’ve rediscovered time and energy to once again pursue professional goals. At first, this stresses me out. What if I choose the wrong path? Will it take too much time away from my family? Can I still do it well? And then I remember this too is just a season. I can change direction at any time, and in the blink of an eye I’ll be an empty nester (with any luck!), entering a different season with new goals, motivations…and worries!
Why all the fluffy stuff, and what does this all have to do with Catalyst or strength training, you ask?
Lots, actually. We’re changing seasons, closing our North Liberty location to focus more time and energy in Solon. While I’ve spent the whole summer dreading and even mourning this decision because it means leaving the place Catalyst started and the most convenient location for some of our favorite clients, it’s also a fresh opportunity to provide better support in a community that we love and look forward to embracing whole-heartedly. As in all seasons in life, we will likely nail things and fail things equally, but our purpose will remain clear. We can’t wait to help you embrace your strongest self…whether you are in a season of building it, feeding it, or just recognizing it.