I went walking in the woods today. The air was chilly and the ground crisp, as you would expect for December, but it was perfect because I needed to be there. Navigating around roots and mossy rocks I found some stability. The woods always have a way of grounding me, at least for the moment. I engage with the beauty, trying to stay mindful while thoughts still jumble around in my head. I hug the tree trunk in front of me and let tears fall down my cold cheeks. It holds me; supportive and strong. As I grasp it like it’s my lifeline, I look up and see it’s empty branches.
I think back to my hikes months ago when I couldn’t even see the sky through the thick ceiling of foliage. And then, the beautiful leaves that painted the sky and littered the ground with a beautiful myriad of color. And now, empty branches.
I used to think of autumn like an ending, a colourful finale. The leaves displaying how beautiful death can be. Today I rethink this.
The tree is still alive.