Fall is upon us. We knew it was coming, but we are never ready. The summer has passed its grand finale, actually a bit late for this time of year. And, we are now headed to the inevitable change of season. The greenery fades and the air takes on a nip at night that signals the end of extended daylight, dips in the pool, and ice cream on the porch. Blankets come out, and shorts are abandoned for pants and jackets.
But, surrounded with all the negativity of summer’s end is a surge of color in the trees around us. That sunny green makes way for yellows and oranges and reds. We find ourselves looking up—not at the sun and birds, but at this new magic that is weaving its art through the branches.
The leaves we see are dying. It is death happening above our heads, as the foliage that has shaded us all summer long is now reaching the end of its days. They are losing their youth, their greenery. They are wrinkling and clinging to the branches that sustain them as the Fall wind tosses their fragile bodies from side to side. Their colors show age. Their time grows nearer with every rainbow that they cast upon themselves. Inevitably, they will fall.
We see beauty. We hear the leaves rustling in the trees and are awestruck by their radiance. We relish in each color change, welcoming the reds, the oranges, the yellows. As they fall, we rejoice. We use the delicate treasures for crafts, paint them, and photograph their colors. As they wither on the ground, we rake them up and jump in them for hours at a time. We even stuff them into patterned bags outside for decorations.
Perspective: It’s a powerful thing. While we don’t necessarily find joy in saying goodbye to summer, there is still a natural beauty in Fall. Those leaves that are giving us such an amazing show are making their way through the stages that will take them away from us, but we choose to see the vibrant colors instead. The leaves are everywhere, making a mess of our yards. But, we still find ways to capture their brilliance. We aren’t pointing out the gaps in the trees that they have fallen from; we are holding onto what nature is gifting us at the time.
I realize, while writing this, that Fall leaves symbolize so much in our lives. Many of us go about our days so focused on our stresses that we miss the real show. There’s a rainbow around us all the time. We just have to look past the gaps.