Why is it that the Fall season has a hard time feeling the love? Maybe it’s because it arrives on the heels of its sweet sister Summer or perhaps it is simply our struggle to flow through cycles of change.
As I stood on my porch, ready to load my SUP, (Stand Up Paddleboard) on the car for what would likely be one of the last paddles of the season, I felt a cool breeze and smelled Fall in the air. I did not open my arms and welcome it, but stood there and ruminated on Summer’s leaving.
Summer is a fine season, filled with warm air, long days and let us not forget the beach! But, like many things, it has a beginning and an end. These patterns can be seen in many events in life and nature:
Work and rest
and yes even in the dreaded aging process.
Change is built into the DNA of every living thing on this planet, and yet we still resist it. Much of the pain in the human experience is a result of clinging to things whose time has passed or desiring something that has not yet come to pass. When you boil it down, the majority of our suffering is a direct result of not occupying the space of this present moment.
When we are children, we could not wait to grow up so we could be in charge of our own lives, so very self assured that we knew everything. Then we did grow up and began to long for the days of our youth.
As we begin to age, the battle is on to keep the same outward appearance that we had a decade or two earlier. After all, it must be the right thing to do because we are constantly being bombarded with advertisements heralding a multitude of different products to halt the aging process.
Like many times in life, fear arises because we can no longer see ourselves through a prism that is known to us.
Fall has a lesson to teach us about releasing and being.
I have a habit of meditating early in the morning so that I close my eyes in darkness and open them with the soft light of the waking day arriving. This particular day, I closed my eyes and when I opened them I saw burnt orange coloring the top of the tree line.
An amazing cascade of color intermingled with the green leaves.
“Do you remember,” Fall gently whispered, and a flood of gratitude for crisp air, pumpkin pie, the feel of my favorite sweater, long hikes and mulled cider came rushing in.
The trees do not cling to their summer color, but effortlessly release their foliage leaving them bare. The decaying material fuels the spring growth.
It is true, we will not be the same person tomorrow, next week or next year that we are today but there is nothing to fear in this change. Like the trees, we will have our Falls (release) so that we have the fuel for our Springs (Growth).
The trick is to see the present, not in terms of what we have lost, but as the perfect expression of what we have become.
So put on your warm gear, step outside and Fall into the moment!