No End to Fresh Starts
Any time is the right time for a new beginning

New York park at dusk with street lights glowing and new springs buds on the trees

I took a walk to a nearby park as I so often do, to give my brain a break and gain some perspective.

The time outside grounds me, giving me a much-needed dose of nature. As I entered the park, the last light of the day was still bright, the sky blue, and yet the lamps along the footpaths were already lit. It was that special in-between time; the time between night and day.  A limbo that can feel like a little of both and none of either.

The park was nearly empty. Piercing the quiet was a single bird, insistent on making its presence known. Winter was over and the flight north had ended at this very tree, in a park filled with other trees, all of whose branches were still bare. But that didn’t matter, apparently. I looked down at the flowers beginning to bloom and had to agree with the bird. The air was cold, but spring was upon us.

Another beginning.

What is it about fresh starts? The past few weeks I’ve seen so many people coming to town for visits (probably because it’s spring). Each person’s life had taken, and continues to take, any number of turns. Some are in daunting moments of their lives, others in delightful ones. All relished the idea of taking a break, “catching my breath,” and starting fresh.

Spring is nothing new. And yet every year its advent is met with joy and eagerness.

In some ways, we are living a series of fresh starts. It’s a way of opening ourselves when we’ve become tired or apathetic. If the physicists are right and time is part of a continuum, then fresh starts are a convention we create for our own benefit.

Smart.

Sometimes Life gives us a fresh start whether we were looking for one or not. But what about those times when we’re looking for a fresh start and Life seems to look back at us blankly and shrug its shoulders?

I say that all a fresh start requires is the conscious decision to begin one. It is a blink. A breath. A nod.

I came to the park at dusk in pursuit of a fresh start. Because time is irrelevant: once you know how to initiate fresh starts, there is no end to them.

And once a fresh start begins, it’s time to get moving. As I inhaled the crisp air of my fresh start, my chilly hands led me to my feet so I could walk home anew.

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