There is so much life lived between the months of May and September. My mother once said, in reference to memories from her childhood, “In my mind, it’s like it was always summer.”
I think about this sometimes when I find myself doing summery things that I’ve done since childhood like sucking the nectar from a honeysuckle flower, staying outside late into the evening watching fireflies and feeling a rush of excitement during a thunderstorm and fireworks.
Last night it suddenly started to rain and I took the baby out to the screened porch to see, hear and smell her first summer downpour. “You will be jumping in the puddles next year,” I told her as we watched the water splash around and gather on the brick patio. Then…thunder! My 6 month old jumped, her eyes got large and I waited for tears. But she did not cry. She just silently watched, listened and took it in.
I love a sudden storm and how it eases the humidity out of the air with a violent show of thunder and lightening. We needed it to take the edge off of a sweltering South Carolina 4th of July. I always see summer as being halfway through on the 4th. The roaring hot and humid days that began in May are in full force come July and by August will begin to fade. The Queen Anne’s Lace along the road will turn brown and the kitchen garden’s fervent pace will slow. And this year I will have a baby who by that point will be crawling and mobile. Maybe even more afraid of new things—teary over a sudden thunderclap.
Like most of the country, tonight we are having a cookout and it will be another first for the baby: Fireworks. I’m hoping she will accept them as she did the thunderstorm as something new, something loud, something powerful, but also something beautiful.