Pitner Orthodontics - October 2019

THE STRAIGHT UP

October 2019

The Reason for the Season Why Fall Is the Best Time of Year

When I was a kid, I was convinced that the state fair was what made fall start each year. I have no idea where I got this idea. It was probably due to the fact that it never got cooler until the fair came to town. In my mind, the fair had to be making the weather get cooler. It wasn’t until I was in high school that I realized it was the other way around. In South Carolina, the fall doesn’t start until October, so at some point, someone decided to schedule the fair for those weeks instead of during the hot summer months. I think I came up with this crazy mythology about the fair causing the seasons to change because fall is my favorite season. I really look forward to that first morning when you step outside and there’s a fresh, crisp feeling in the air. It’s the kind of hopeful feeling that makes you think anything is possible that day. There’s a slight chill, and after months of 81-degree mornings, I’m glad to reach for my jacket. “I REALLY LOOK FORWARD TO THAT FIRST MORNING WHEN YOU STEP OUTSIDE AND THERE’S A FRESH, CRISP FEELING IN THE AIR.”

Fall is a wonderful time of year. The colors are rich and beautiful as the leaves change, and the sun goes down at a reasonable hour. I like to go to bed early, and that’s hard to do when the sun is up until 10 p.m. When the sun sets at 7 p.m., it feels like the world giving me permission to do what I wanted to do anyway: go to bed.

It’s also time for the harvest. When my grandmother was still alive, she went all-in on harvesting fresh produce. She’d make dozens of different jams, can mountains of food, and store it all in her freezer. I swear, the end times could have come and as long as you had a generator for the freezer, you could have lived for a year off of what she prepared in the fall. The fall is a pretty good time for a metaphorical harvest, too. In the spring, when we’re surrounded by new life and new beginnings, it inspires us to make new plans for our life. What did you have planned? How did it play out?What are you harvesting now? When the temperature drops and the days get shorter, a lot of people start to dread the oncoming winter. They skip right over the beauty of fall! The fall equinox was on Sept. 23 this year; it’s a day when the sun is over the equator, so day and night are equal length.

It’s an amazing transition from summer into winter. With all of our 21st-century conveniences, we’ve become disconnected from nature and can miss this subtle shift. But this shift is what makes fall so great. As the color changes, the food becomes plentiful, and the days get darker, it’s not hard to see why ancient cultures would create elaborate legends about the season, or why a kid would decide the state fair brought fall along with it.

–Dr. Leslie Pitner

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