Not Falling for Fall

You know those people who are always excited when they first notice a chill in the air? It’s like the temperature drops below 70 degrees and everyone is suddenly chugging Pumpkin Spice Lattes. I am not one of those people. I have lived in Chicago long enough to know that autumn doesn’t exist here. I know that in two weeks, I’m going to be wrapped up in my parka suffering though my first full Chicago winter in four years.

After living in Miami, I completely forgot how to dress for winter. My style has always been on the feminine side and nothing brings me more joy than putting on a sundress or a romper with strappy heels. Once Labor Day rolls around and it’s no longer socially acceptable to bare my legs, I don’t know what to do. Not only does my wardrobe lack the necessary garments to outfit myself for the cold – but I don’t even know what to do with the things I do own. Do people still wear scarves as a statement piece? I need to know.

My Chicago blood was weakened by three and a half years in Southern Florida. Does that mean I want to move back to Florida? Absolutely not. It must be some form of masochism that I intend to spend my life in Chicago although I hate the cold. The bottom line is that I love this city – even when the cold makes me cry and then my tears subsequently freeze.

But enough about the weather! What are we – two strangers trying to make small talk on an elevator?

This summer has been different for me for many reasons, the most prominent reason being that I worked through the entire thing. Of course, I have been working ever since the first summer I could legally get a job, but even then, summer was a break from the norm. My parents are both teachers, so once it started getting warm out I was like “wait what do you MEAN I don’t get three months off but still got paid for it?????”

These last few months have been a major learning experience for me. I went through some lows and some highs and I definitely grew up a lot. As a round-up, here are some things I did this summer:

  • Read an insane amount of books (I LOVE YOU, KINDLE!)
  • Probably tried around 20 new restaurants
  • Almost moved to the city three different times
  • Made HELLA new friends
  • Spent too much money on clothes
  • Spent even more money on food
  • But also got to eat a lot of free food
  • Went vegan (for the most part)
  • Got a job
  • Got SUPER cute folders to use at my new job
  • Booked a trip with some of my BEST friends to my number one bucket list city (SEE YOU SOON, ATX)
  • Went to Door County with my mom (again)
  • Went to Lollapalooza for the first (and probably the last) time
  • Saw the Zac Brown Band and Jake Owen
  • Acted in a short film
  • Ran three 5k’s (that’s 15 full K’s!!!)

My summer wasn’t anything out of the ordinary. I don’t go on any crazy trips or ~find myself~ or whatever (I’m still looking). It was the small things about this summer that made it special. I associate many of my summers with symbols. For example, the summer of 2012 was the summer of Cherry Berry Chillers, the summer of 2016 was the summer of Jungle Juice. This summer was the summer of Progress (no, that is not also a beverage). I am not perfect, and I still go through my struggles but this summer helped me get closer to who I’m supposed to be.

I’m sad that this summer had to come to an end (mainly because I have to pack up all of my dresses and skirts), but I am excited to see what lies ahead.

Happy 10 months of winter,

Nat

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