13 years ago our nation was attacked. It took our collective breath away. I remember the horror of watching the buildings fall, the news coverage jumping from Pennsylvania to the Pentagon and then back again to the Twin Towers. Finally, once we felt the danger was over, everyone pitched in to help. Our country was united in a way that I’d never experienced. Politics aside, we helped, lifted, served and loved one another.
My grandpa is a WWII vet who was stationed at Pearl Harbor when it was bombed. His generation served their country and then came home with their hearts set on family. In his 90’s now, he lives in the same house he raised his children in. He works in his garden, crafts homemade wood boxes, is active on social media and loves to be surrounded by his family. He lives simply and happily. He has lived this way for his entire adult life.
After a tragedy, the shiny complications of life fall away and we are left to focus on what is most important: family, love, community, service, and God. Slowly, the lessons learned are tucked away in our memories and we go back to focusing on the newest iPhone, the prettiest cars and all other modern fancies.
September is the last month before the rush of the holidays overtakes us. October brings Halloween with fists full of candy. November ushers in Thanksgiving. Gratitude is always a blessing but somehow we’ve managed to juxtapose it with gorging ourselves and shopping all night. December brings joy, but also a frantic hunt for the perfect gift, mailing of Christmas cards, planning and attending party after party. To top it all off, we stay up all night on New Year’s Eve dancing, singing and laughing. I’m not complaining! I love the holidays as much as the next girl. I’m simply pointing out that September is the last time we have to breathe before we are swept away.
Simply September. This is the perfect time to scale back and to consciously focus on what is most important. This month I’m purging my every nook and cranny. I have three large bins set up in my living room: Trash, Donate and Sell. I’ve cut the fluff out of my budget (do I really need BOTH Birchbox and Ipsy? Netflix and Hulu? iCloud and Dropbox?). I am simplifying my eating, my exercise and sleeping better than I have in a long time. I’m stripping my calendar of its excess and focusing on my loved ones.
In a world that values busyness and that thrives on overcomplication, I’ve dedicated September to Simplicity. I solemnly swear to cherish every true-love handhold, every puppy kiss and snuggle, every long conversation with a best friend. I will cherish every delicious bite, every can’t-put-you-down book and every kneeling prayer.
What can you do to simplify this month? Let’s share our plans with #SimplySeptember!