Fall leavesOCTOBER 1, 2014

When New Winds Blow

The cooler air and lighter sun signal the change of seasons, when the frenzy of summer gives way to the cadence of fall. In these northeastern climes, verdant greens are starting to change to gold, red, orange, yellow, the final farewell of leaves bidding goodbye to the branches that have held them since spring. I wonder what they might be speaking to each other, perhaps “see you in several months when more light returns.” It is often during autumn when I feel melancholic, perhaps a way for me to start easing into winter’s bitter embrace.

This change of seasons mirrors the passing of time in our own lives. What did we sow in our spring that we watched grow in our summer, that we are now harvesting in our autumn? As importantly, are we prepared for the natural passing into our final chapters, the winter of our lives, letting go of what was, surrendering to what is, and accepting what will be?

In the natural flow of nature’s changes we find the realities of the shifts in our own lives, and yet perhaps the most difficult for us humans to accept is change.

In my work, I have seen the faces of change in my clients’ feelings of anxiety, stress, and confusion. Whatever the change, it is natural to feel the need for stability and reassurance as we confront the unknown. But I wish to add that as we leave the old and familiar behind, we also look into the eyes of grief, and especially when it is our own, the sorrow strikes even deeper. For indeed we always grieve what we leave behind, whether we acknowledge it consciously or not, as well as whether we choose the change ourselves or not. Grief is as difficult to go through as change itself especially when it plunges us into spaces we would rather not see.

Much of our work around self-awareness and healing requires a great deal of courage to look at and embrace our grief. We have the choice to run away from it or accept that it is part of our shared human experience, that we are not alone in wanting to comfort our broken hearts. Whatever we acknowledge and accept, we can heal. And there is comfort in the hopefulness of healing, much like there is comfort in knowing that whatever the toll of winter, spring always comes.

©2014 Copyright Margie Santos