Sunday, October 19, 2014

Learning to Appreciate the Beauty in Change

Yesterday, my 21 year old daughter Emily and I spent our Saturday afternoon in a local cemetery.  We weren't there for a funeral or to visit a loved one who had passed, rather we were there for fun.  What's that, you say?  Let me explain.  

We are both very creative, visual people and one of our mutual hobbies is photography.  We had planned to spend the day searching for photo ops, taking a short road trip to a neighboring community via a driving tour but when we woke up this morning, the weather was not being very cooperative.  Rather than spending the time and gas to drive all that way without the kind of weather we had hoped for, we opted to stay close to home.  We were a little disappointed that we had to postpone our outing but decided to make the best of it.  We headed for one of the local cemeteries, known for it's massive trees and gorgeous autumn colors.

Fall is our absolute FAVORITE season.  We love the chill in the air and pulling out our favorite sweatshirts and me, my baseball cap.  We anxiously await the transformation of the leaves to their vibrant colors of gold, orange and red, drinking in the moving art as the branches sway in the autumn breeze, painting a masterpiece of fluid color.  I am always amazed at the beauty in the finality of this season.  I personally like to think that the elegance of it's last days is a result of the refinement of the previous seasons.

The sounds of autumn bring as much enjoyment for us as the sight of the season.  The rustling of the leaves in the wind as they cling to the branches as long as possible before slowly drifting to the ground below.  The crunch of the crisp, dried foliage underfoot on an evening walk, and the whisper of leaves carried by the wind as they blow across the pavement.  For me, all of this encompasses this season of massive change.

For years, I've been afraid of change, dreaded it, in fact.  I've preferred to try to exist in a comfort zone of my own making, convincing myself that this was an achievement, to reach that point of tranquility and contentment.  However, I have since had to accept that everything is temporary, nothing stays the same, and as sure as you think you have reached that "place of peace," so to speak, something goes awry.  Life is what happens when you're making plans!  I have always been someone who would fall apart if my plans didn't come together, and spontaneity has never been a part of my mindset or vocabulary!  I am STILL learning to "let it go," if you will, when something doesn't work out the way I'd hoped.

Yesterday was a good opportunity for me to put that into practice, and although it wasn't exactly what we'd planned to do, what we DID end up doing, was exactly what we needed.  By the end of the day, we found ourselves literally rolling on the ground, our laughter echoing on the breeze, as we were attempting "mid-air" captures with the camera. 

                                                  After a few fails....


Only Emily & I could have this much fun in a cemetery, quite a contrast, I know.  Of course, we meant absolutely no disrespect to the deceased in our endeavors today, but I kind of think we might have brought some smiles to any lingering spirits that were watching (and possibly any groundskeepers.)  If you think about it all, the adventure today, the season we celebrate and admire, the location we ended up in was symbolic.  Change is not easy, sometimes it's painful and we grieve losses and endings. All things have a beginning, and an end.  To everything there is a season, and it's up to us to find and appreciate the beauty in the end of one and the beginning of another.  Don't make the mistake of stopping short of a potential monumental discovery or life lesson by the distractions of life or plans that are altered or changed.  Maybe, just maybe, what you wanted was not what you needed because what you needed was in the change.  If we can discover this ultimate gift in the every day moments, we have tapped into one of the greatest secrets in living life to the fullest.

Embrace your becoming moments,

1 comment:

  1. I wish each of us could embrace change. To change constantly is to grow.