It’s the middle of winter. Yes, spring might be around the corner, but we’re not going to get any really warm weather until December, so August is about as far away from warmth as we can imagine. At least, for those of us living in Wellington. And so we hibernate, we feel enervated and gloomy, unless we’re amongst the ski enthusiasts, or the lucky ones escaping to the nearby tropics or the warmth of the (further away) northern hemisphere.
It’s also the month I should be celebrating one or two birthdays from the ectopic babies I lost. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not writing this in tears, I don’t even feel particularly sad. But I remember. I remember the first August after the first loss. Then the second August after the second loss, when my first IVF had failed. (Actually, the second August my husband and I found we had six weeks between IVF cycles, so we took off for a holiday to Vanuatu. It was lovely, but sad.) Then seven years ago, my father died in August. It doesn’t seem that long ago. And no, I’m not in tears over my father either. I think seeing someone in pain makes their death a little easier to take. Yes, I miss him. OK, I’ll stop there, because that last sentence meant that the tears do in fact threaten.
This August though, as the other losses fade, there’s a new loss. I’m about to sever my connection with an organisation that has been enormously important to me. I’ve talked about it before, so some of you will know the one I am referring to, but right now I don’t want to mention it specifically by name. I suspect I will sometime in the future, when I feel able. I feel sad though, and conflicted. I know my leaving will put the organisation in a bind. But it’s their fault I’m leaving, and I’ve tried to see a way around it. But there’s only so much I can give. My reservoir of goodwill is running dry. I’m proud of what I’ve done there. But leaving is yet another tiny loss, and that’s not always easy to deal with, on top of so many others.
August - such a wonderful word. Its synonyms include dignified, exalted, glorious, grand, imposing, impressive, magnificent, majestic, superb. That’s about the opposite of how I feel this August. So no,
August is not my favourite month. I’ve been in a funk all month. But today the sun is shining, the sky is startlingly blue, it’s after 6 pm and it is not yet dark, and I’ve made some decisions. Spring is on the way.