Roots. A piece inspired on a September morning.
Do you ever get the feeling that the world spins a little slower with the delivery of an intentional message? A moment, that until it arrives, would otherwise seem normal and without fanfare. But with the delivery of said message, time slows, the words float on air, and find their way into your heart with an undeniable spark and a calling.
This has been occurring to me with increased frequency. At first, like with any happy coincidence in life, I used to brush these messages off as insignificant, ignore them, or even ask them politely to go away. But my stubborn ignorance only lead to their insistent haunting. So I heeded. And now, the more I openly receive these messages, the quicker I am to understand their worth. My latest message appeared across the quick succession of conversation topics with my darling 86 year old grandmother. We chatted about many topics that day, but her message spoke most clearly of just one: roots.
Cue the ushering in of the sweet month of September, arriving with its promise of Fall. While some lament the end of summer, I stand with open arms ready to embrace you - you, the season that's always embodied the start of something new to me. Yes, the leaves of Autumn, falling listlessly to the ground may not incite the quintessential feeling of something new. But if you look up from those temporarily vibrant but indisposed leaves, you will find that the branches those leaves fell from remain. And if you trace back down the twisting, reaching branches, you will find a trunk and further below that, the roots. Those also all remain. Like this tree, I've seen seasons come and seasons go. In the Spring and Summer, my own fresh hopes and wishes spurt, bloom and grow. With the changing seasons, like the leaves, some of my more fragile hopes dwindle and fade away. But who I am does not fade with the passing of time. Who I am remains: in the branches reaching up with a dreamer's desire for more love and more light; in a sturdy trunk that is my steadfast heart - a trunk that's been carved and slightly cracked - but steadfast nonetheless; and in the roots, where I derive strength and humility, intertwined deep and with those I love. My fragile hopes may flail and flutter, but to trace back down to the roots is an exercise in self-remembrance. The wise and mystic poet Rumi once said, "maybe you are searching among the branches, for what only appears in the roots." It is only with the dwindling of fragile hopes in the Fall that I am reminded of this exercise, encouraged to replenish energy among my roots, and prepare new hopes to blossom.
You, too, are meant to anchor your roots and be strong. You, too, are meant to grow, onward & upward. And if you are strong and you do grow, you will survive the tests of time, embrace the new beginnings Fall ushers in... and with every Spring, sprout your ephemeral hopes to send off into the world. Who knows where these hopes may land. Better yet, who knows where they may grow.