autumn leaves

Deciduous Trees have always fascinated me. They are really magical…

During the spring, they burst forth with life, feeding the world around them with seeds and buds and colors. With the energy of sunlight their leaves convert carbon dioxide and water into chemical compounds of sugary carbohydrates that cycle back into the Trees, feeding them. A by-product of that chemical reaction is oxygen – the very thing we humans need to breathe so we can be alive. So magical!

In the Autumn, the days grow shorter and colder and sunlight diminishes. This means the leaves are no longer able to produce enough sugar to keep feeding the reciprocal cycle and they begin to be a drain on the intricate system. The Trees then withdraw inward, bringing their sap to the core to nourish them and prepare them for the long sleep of winter, their integration and restoring period, when they shore up for the explosion of spring.

They draw inward because, as the season changes from summer to autumn to winter, and the days grow shorter and colder, there is no longer enough “it” in the atmosphere to nourish the core of the tree *and* the leaves. Something has to go. Either the Trees let go of their leaves, which are no longer serving them, or they die of starvation from feeding something that no longer serves them.

In the process of letting go, the Trees CHOOSE to do so beautifully. They could just let go of the green, but in one last burst of alchemical magic, the leaves go through changes in color as they prepare to drop. As they prepare for their release, they have one last hurrah! and they grace us with delicious beauty, and then they let go. When the leaves finally let go, falling to the ground, they become the blanket that keeps the roots warm, and eventually the food that decomposes into the ground that will feed the plant from within the earth.

In a conversation with my dear friend, Paula, the other day, she pointed out an aspect that I hadn’t even considered before, “When the Trees let go of their leaves, they never throw tantrums and try to pick up what it is they have released. They just let go.”

When she said that, I gasped and then laughed loudly for several moments, to the point that I couldn’t breathe and I had tears streaming down my cheeks. I am still laughing, nearly a week later.

How many times have I thrown a tantrum as I’m trying to let go of the very thing that is no longer serving me, that has become a drain on my reserves? How many times have I looked at the “leaves” on the ground at my feet, weeping that they are “gone,” and struggled to pick them back up and glue them to me? How many times have I felt like I was “wrong” for letting go of something that soooo needed to be let go of so I could live?

Today, as I was walking about, I delighted in the golden leaves upon the ground. So many sizes and shapes and hues of yellow and brown. They skittered along, dancing and swirling in tinkling vortexes that moved them from the ground, upwards, and all about to other places, where they settled down in a new blanket. I appreciated the crunching of them beneath my feet.

And, most of all, I appreciated the reminder that… everything is as it should be when I trust the divine nature within me and when I begin yearning to let go, somewhere within me, the spark of the Creator is letting me know, “Angie, it is time.”

© Angie K. Millgate 2016

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