Every year at this time I marvel in the way change sweeps across the landscape in such a bold and evident way, as though it commands you to be present to its show. The other day, while sitting in the grass with my beautiful boys, we watched the turning leaves whip around with the wind and I was reminded of my childhood. Ever since I was a little girl I have been fascinated by autumn leaves falling from the trees, with their prepared resignation to fall away from the security of their branch to the whim of the path below, in complete surrender. I could walk for hours watching as they would just spontaneously fall and descend effortlessly. I would play and roll around in them until my frenetic energy would burn away and be replaced with intrigue as my hands would gently begin to sift through them searching for the ones I treasured the most; the ones that had been drained of their vibrancy, stripped bare and left in their skeletal form.
As I sat with the boys we looked for what had now become our most treasured leaves and I realised that I had been sitting in a state of autumn for a really long time. Discomfort and unfamiliarity had arrived some time back; to try to break through to me, to help me shed old patterns and ways of thinking. And although my patterns and old ways of thinking had slowly been turning and falling from me, like autumn leaves to the ground, I had not been as prepared or resigned to the surrender as the leaves I was witnessing with my boys.
With this realisation I was reminded that I am not my struggles; they are simply the catalyst for change.
Every time the boys and I find our treasured leaves we excitedly share their uniqueness and honour and revere in their strength as they lay in our hands in their transparent and seemingly fragile state. We are always so intrigued by the way in which something so thin can breakdown its external surface to expose its vulnerable internal structure. We admire and always note with pleasure the different state of decomposition we find each one in and how even when stripped down to their barest state some of them seem more robust than the other, as though they are not quite ready to let go and disintegrate. But we especially like the ones that are so brittle and dry that they simply turn to dust as you twist your fingers across them and they disappear with the wind as if they never existed.
As I sat with my beautiful boys watching the stunning show of leaves silently falling around us, I was yet again reminded that the leaves fall every year with divine timing. That they have an innate knowing of the time to surrender and at the perfect time they just fall. It was in this moment that I realised that although some of my old patterns and ways of thinking were falling away and turning to dust, I was still creating resistance as I held on to the ones that I was not quite ready to let go of. With this realisation I was reminded that I am not my struggles; they are simply the catalyst for change. And just as the falling leaves of autumn become the fertiliser for new growth in the spring, my old patterns and ways of thinking needed to not only fall away, but they needed to completely break down and die before I could begin to rebuild them or utilise them as something completely new.
When we realise that the discomfort of change only ever arrives to break through to us we can trust in our need to surrender and allow our old ways to fall away so that they can become the fertiliser for our new growth.
Just like the leaves with their prepared resignation to surrender their security because of their innate knowing of their divine time to fall, we need to get out of our way and surrender ourselves to our natural process of change. We need to be present to the elaborate show that our change offers us in order to recognise when we have become the robust leaves that aren’t quite ready to let go so that we can shift the resistance that stops us from moving into the more trusting state of the ones that easily turn to dust and blow away with the wind. When we realise that the discomfort of change only ever arrives to break through to us we can trust in our need to surrender and allow our old ways to fall away so that they can become the fertiliser for our new growth.
From my heart to yours