With the final long weekend of the summer, fall is right around the corner. Autumn has always been my favorite time of year. Something about the clear, crisp nights and gorgeous bluebird days brings clarity to my mind and spirit. Recently, while marveling at how quickly summer has flown by, I had a bit of an epiphany about the seasons of life.

As a relatively new parent, I feel as though we are currently in the middle of an all-consuming marathon. It’s exhausting! Thinking that this might last a lifetime is enough to make anyone cry. And yes, I’ve had my moments of tears. But there is hope. As with the changing seasons here in our beautiful valley, life is full of seasons, as well.

Reflecting on where my life story has already taken me, I am amazed at how quickly it has all seemed to pass. Perhaps it’s somewhat cathartic, but hindsight has a way of giving perspective. In my ski career, the training and focus was all consuming. But that time has passed, and I’ve enjoyed many more adventures and opportunities.

In the midst of each season, life can feel over — or even under — whelming. Whether you’re in the middle of child raising, school, marriage or a career, it’s easy to lose perspective. But if hindsight has taught me anything, seasons are not finite. The ebb and flow of life will continue to move along, and hopefully we can slow down and have some appreciation for the moment. Because whatever phase of life we all might be in, there is always change on the horizon.


Caroline Lalive Carmichael moved to Steamboat with her family in 1995 and joined the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club. After one season, Caroline was named to the U.S. Ski Team and competed for 13 years, attending two Olympics. After retiring in 2009, she returned to Steamboat as a coach. She and fellow Olympian Nelson Carmichael were married in 2012 and welcomed their daughter, Freya, in 2015.