Walking outside into the newly crisp air today it all of a sudden hit me: its fall. Sometimes it seems like a person's whole world consists of the three foot radius surrounding their body. We keep our heads down as we go about our days and forget to glance up to see what is happening just beyond our bubble. I took a moment to step outside myself and open my field of vision. I noticed the trees near my house are almost bare. The fallen leaves were tumbling down the street on a breeze. When did this happen? Where have I been?
As I was driving I started to think what it must be like to live the life of a tree. During the process of your growth you have tethered yourself firmly to the ground. That is your place in the world. In your lifetime you'd witness an amazing amount of things from one spot.
Your life would be a constant a cycle. Once a year your leaves would change to the most brilliant shades of gold and burgundy. Then, the Winter would strip you bare and coat you in a cloak of white only to have the warmth of the sun awaken you in the Spring. You would be reborn. A fresh start every year.
There was a point to this thought process. I don't usually go around thinking of the lives of trees. I was thinking of this because of the band Dead Sea Choir. There is a link on their website to a Google search for "I want to start my life all over again". Its very interesting what you come across when you search for this. When I clicked on some of the search results, I found cries for help from sad, desperate people who felt trapped in their unhappy lives. For one personal reason or another, they've each come to a point where they feel the path they've followed in life isn't right anymore and they are ready for a do-over. It made me sad to think people live their lives feeling this way.
Someone once told me it is never too late to start over. She said no matter your age, or circumstance, or the choices you've made in life, you can always start again. It is never too late for a do-over. People never tell you this about life. I felt like she was letting me in on a secret. These words of wisdom have stuck with me for years. And I live by them.
Change, especially life change, is hard and its scary. This is why we resist it. This is why we think it is impossible and we cling to the predictable even though it can make us miserable. Throughout my life I have discovered that I am not this way. One day I can just decide that I'm done. I'm over it. I might resist the idea at first, but once I make up my mind that I am finished with a part of my life, I do a complete 180 and change everything. I have done this a couple of times in my short life already.
I think I am like a tree, and I find that empowering. Just when I feel like my branches are being pulled down by the weight of Winter, I eventually find the sun and start again. I wish that other people felt like they had the power to change their lives. I hope I have let them in on this secret like she did for me.