Being Back at School

posted by Sydney

Back to School is, hands down, my favourite time of year. When I say back to school, I really mean that last week of August and first week of September. Business Depot (is it even called that anymore?) flyers are a big deal and a new wardrobe has to be purchased immediately. You can feel a tingling anticipating that runs like a current through the air. Even those who won’t be returning back to formal school setting are all buzzing with the excitement. Sadly, those few weeks have passed. Now we’re into September, and really back at school. Personally, I have my foot firmly wedged in the formal education door (17 years and counting) and have been back in school for the past few weeks. My current educational pursuits are leading me to become a midwife. I’m doing my degree at Ryerson, which being a post-secondary institution, brings with it all the trappings of a traditional back-to-school routine. Text books, welcome back events, new notebooks and seeing old friends. Once the sheen of back to school excitement wears off, we’re all just back in our routines. Each day starts to pass the same way and it can really feel like we’re only playing catch-up. This is where I am now.

To get out of the slump of monotony and being buried under a horrendous amount of “stuff I need to do”, I turn to food, and to the earth.  Taking cues from the cycles of the fields and the trees. Making the best with what’s available. While we can all agree it is sad that peach season is over, let’s rejoice that now we have apples. Hardy and bountiful apples that make your mouth pucker and fill a pie like no other. Squashes and pumpkins are soon to follow. It’s a moment to stop looking back and instead focus on the present. What’s here now? What can I learn now that will help me later? Back to school is beautiful with its rituals and feeling of renewal and fresh-start-ability, but mostly it’s a call to be present.  To focus on the now. The world of farming and harvesting food demands our attention.  To stop worrying about the midterm and consider if I actually learned what I’m being presented with. To learn what I can do with the food in front of me, to prepare for what’s ahead. Food is such a great way to keep life in perspective, and to keep us healthy. 

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