You are currently viewing Episode 150 – Lessons Learned from Autumn

Episode 150 – Lessons Learned from Autumn

Are you a fan of fall? I am. I love the chill in the air, the colors, the treats and especially the smells. Sometimes fall can also be a difficult time as we pass through another season without our children. Today I’m sharing how the changes we see in autumn can teach us so much especially after miscarriage, stillbirth or babyloss of any kind.
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Music by ZingDog on Pond5


Welcome to this week’s episode. I thank you so much for being here. I appreciate it so much. If you’re loving the podcast, will you go give me a review on, especially on Apple podcasts, but on Spotify also, you can leave a review. It means so much and it helps more people find the podcast and know that it’s a great podcast for life after baby loss.

I have one more reminder. We are going into Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day and the fourth anniversary of the Smoothstones podcast. We’re celebrating by reading your baby’s names and the lessons they’ve taught you. If you go in the show notes, you can submit a form. That will tell me about your baby, and I’m going to read it on the air next week.

I need all those submissions in by the 8th so that I have time to put everything together and record. So please go submit your baby’s name. It would be my honor. honor to be able to read about them and share them and say their name as a bonus and a thank you for being here. I’m going to be giving away some birthday presents.

I just love sending things in the mail. I honestly do. I even like going to the post office and so I’ve got some great prizes and presents that I’m going to be sending out to some of the people who have submitted. So go and do that. Let’s talk about today’s topic. Where I live, um, in Utah, fall is in full bloom.

And the other night I went out with my daughter. We needed to run an errand and I decided to splurge a little bit and go get a Starbucks caramel apple cider. Now, I am not a coffee drinker. I actually don’t drink any coffee at all, so I don’t go to Starbucks very often, but the Caramel Apple Cider, I will highly recommend.

It’s so yummy, but it’s been so hot, even though it’s starting to be fall, it’s been really, really hot. And so that evening, it just felt like there was that little bit of chill, and so we went and got our drinks, and it was so good. And I’ve been looking a lot more at recipes and things that we can eat.

Now that it’s cooled off a bit, and I personally am a huge fan of fall. Uh, I, I really like it, especially cause I do not, I’m not a fan of being super hot. And so, yeah, I’m liking it as it changes. So I want to ask you, what is your favorite fall treat? What do you love? What are you looking forward to? I really, I pretty much love all of it.

It’s, it’s all so good and just such a, a difference, right? Like what we want to eat and what feels good and smells good and sounds good. Um, as the temperature and the season shift. So I wanted to share just a few lessons today that fall teaches us. I’m going to call it fall. I’m going to call it autumn either way.

I’m Same thing, but I have a few lessons and I want you as always, I’m going to share lessons. I’ve learned lessons that I see what I really want you to do is just ponder just open up when we look at life as a classroom, when we look at the people around us and the things that happen as our teachers.

Then we’re going to always be in a state of learning instead of a state of panic or resistance or wishing things were different, like wishing it was still really, really hot or whatever it is, you know, if you’re, you’re like a summer person, right? You might be in some resistance to fall, but if we really can look at our world and our human experience by staying present and by opening up to the lessons that are there.

It’s so magical and I especially love nature. Nature is such an amazing teacher. It’s amazing for our littles and it’s amazing for adults. And maybe we don’t spend enough time. So if you’ve been at your computer, in your car, running around, give yourself a chance to get out. Even like put your shoes on and go walk with me for the rest of this podcast, but just get outside and see what nature can teach you.

Even if you live somewhere, there’s not a ton of nature in a big city, whatever it is, see what you can find. The lessons are there. Okay, first lesson, and there’s no particular order. They’re all amazing. But number one is… It’s okay to let go of what you don’t need anymore And i’m thinking about these leaves falling down and how they do it and when they do it it’s really really interesting how Nature just knows they it kind of knows how long it has it kind of knows How much light there is in the day?

It knows how cold it’s gonna be And I grew up with a bunch of farmers and so they always were very aware That they could watch the trees and watch the leaves and watch what was happening to maybe see what kind of winter we were going to have or what was coming next. So it’s okay to let go of what you don’t need anymore.

I was doing a little bit of research because that’s what I do and I read something that I thought was so interesting because I think a lot of us think, well, they just fall off because they’re dead, you know, like they’re dying. They only live for the summer and so they just die. But what it said on, um, this website was that cold winters are a threat to these trees that have the type of leaves.

They’re not evergreen. Um, they’re a little more tender. They need more light. Cold winters are a threat, and they’re more likely to be hurt or harmed. So it said, and I will quote, Plants drop their leaves in a controlled fashion to reduce injuries and conserve energy. And I actually really love that it gives a little bit like the tree is making a choice, right?

And it’s making a smart choice because it knows it needs to protect itself so it can grow back in the spring. And I want you to think about that. Where have you maybe been thinking this is happening to you? Like winter is shoving itself upon you. The cold is shoving itself upon you and you don’t really have any choices, but to deal with the brunt of it or to be injured or whatever.

And how could you turn it around to just say, yeah, I am going to protect myself. I have a choice. This is what I’m going to do and take that ownership back. So I love thinking that the trees are doing this. Out of self preservation because they know what they need to do. And so they do it so good. So what can you let go of that you don’t need anymore?

It could be beliefs. It could be people, it could be habits, it could be just anything that isn’t serving you anymore. You can let go of it. It’s a really, really important to give yourself this permission. I will give you this permission. Let go of the things you don’t need anymore. It really doesn’t matter.

You are the best expert on your own life. You know, what’s important and you know, what’s not important. So let it go. All right, number two We all need seasons of rest Again, the the reason that it said before why they drop their leaves is so they can conserve energy Right, there’s points where it’s gonna be cold.

It’s gonna be windy. It’s gonna be freezing. So Conserve your energy, rest. We are not supposed to be on all the time. We are not like the sun, shining every day exactly the same. Now, yes, sometimes the sun gets covered up, we know this. But like, we are not robots. We’re not supposed to just be doing the same things over and over.

Every day, all the time, for our entire lives. There are seasons where we need more rest when you’ve just experienced the death of your baby That’s a good season to rest if your kids are struggling your living kids are struggling You might need extra rest if you are in transition or you’re in turmoil Or you have a lot of uncertainty or your health is struggling or your mental health is struggling You can rest or if you just recognize That you have been running So hard for so long and you just can’t do it anymore and you don’t want to do it anymore.

Rest. Think about fall. Think about what happens. Think about this process of letting go and shutting things down one step at a time. Rest is productive. Rest is doing something. Rest is taking care of yourself. And rest matters. We need to tell ourselves this and believe it. Okay, number three, there is beauty in the breakdown.

I love the leaves when they change. I love going for a drive with my husband. Sometimes we take our living kids and they are, they don’t enjoy it as much as us a lot of the times, which is just funny. Why, like a five year old wouldn’t want to just go look at leaves. But I, I mean, you just see the pictures and It’s just so fun where we live.

There are mountains really nearby. So it’s really easy to get out and go and look at things and take pictures. And we do family pictures and you see the sun shining down, especially at golden hour, just making these trees glow. Like they’re on fire. It’s beautiful. And it’s a breakdown. These leaves are breaking down.

I looked it up, and if you’re a nerd like me, I learned some new words. I’m so excited. And I’m probably going to say them wrong. But what happens is, the leaves are green because they’re full of chlorophyll. Most of us know that. Um, and that’s, you know, when the… The leaves are just doing their thing, taking in all the sun’s energy and making the things they need, but as they start to change, the chlorophyll drops off.

So they’re not making as much chlorophyll anymore, and what’s left are called carotenoids. And that’s what makes it yellow and orange. So that’s where the yellow and orange colors come from. It’s basically the chlorophyll exiting. . And then there’s anthocyanins, which create red and purple colors.

And they, um, come in and sometimes it will go yellow, orange, red, purple. ,

That is part of the process. It’s a beautiful process. And so it’s taking what was working. So again, as you reply, apply this to yourself, seeking what was working chlorophyll is working all summer long is doing great. It was happy. It was green. You know what? It needed to break down though. It needed to take a rest.

It needed to stop making that. It needed to replace it with something else. As this process happens, as each leaf falls and so interesting, I kind of want to do more research on, you know, how do they know when the leaves should fall and how, what’s the process like? Why are there some trees that hang on to their leaves until the very, very end and some that go first So for you as you’re listening What beauty is in your breakdown?

What have you learned? How can you celebrate yourself? Like we celebrate a bright yellow autumn tree, right? We celebrate we love it I was just in Hobby Lobby. We’re kind of idolizing some of these fall colors. We’re just like they’re everywhere. We love them We don’t love ourselves when we’re breaking down a lot of the time, but there is beauty in the breakdown.

There are lessons to be learned and the whole process is beautiful from green to yellow to orange to red to purple to falling on the ground and becoming brown and brittle and going back into the earth. That cycle is beautiful. So how can you find beauty in your own breakdown, whether it’s little daily breakdowns or whether you’re feeling at the bottom of a pit right now and you, you’re trying to scrape your way up the sides, find the beauty anyways.

Number four, when life gets dark, it’s okay to turn inward. I love this one. I’ve kind of already touched on it. But we know that the reason that leaves start to turn and things start to change is because there becomes less sunlight and it signals to the trees that winter is coming. And if you feel like things are getting dark or things are dark, you can turn inward.

You can take, like, I love how the trees take the sap and all of it. It kind of like goes inward. It sucks inward and they do what they need to, to conserve that energy and to take care of what’s most important and to go to the core. And that’s what we can do too. Where is life feeling dark or cold? How can you turn inward?

How can you take care of what’s most important? How can you get to the heart of what is within you? How can you let go of the stuff that doesn’t matter anymore? When life gets dark, it’s okay to turn inward. It’s part of the process. There’s nothing wrong with you. I see people every day feeling like they’re failing.

Because they can’t do what they used to do for whatever reason. You’re not supposed to always do the same things that you did before. You’re shifting. You’re changing. There’s a lot going on. And that is all okay. In fact, it’s more than okay. It’s what is supposed to happen. We have to let go of this notion that it should be perpetual, same, same, summer.

Because that’s what we want. We want happy and sunny and, you know, all of that. There has to be a cycle. And number five is we wouldn’t appreciate the warmth without the chill. Now, I was talking about these amazing treats that we have. And it’s so interesting how we do. Like when it’s hot, we want to eat simple.

We don’t want to have the oven on. We don’t want more hot. We don’t want to use the crock pot. We don’t want soups and stews and, and all of that. But once we feel that chill in the air, once we feel that opposition, then we’re drawn to warmth

and those opposites really go together, but you couldn’t enjoy that hot chili with fresh baked bread when it’s 117 degrees, it needs to have some balance. So the chill in our lives. Can be anything whatever you’re going through right now, whether it’s a relationship thing a grief thing Whether whatever you’re struggling with that is working for you.

That is going to help you This is a beautiful gift in our lives and the more we resist it The harder life is and the more we lean into it the easier it gets We wouldn’t appreciate the warmth without the chill. Our lives are supposed to have opposites. Otherwise, we wouldn’t know it. We wouldn’t know love without heartbreak.

We wouldn’t know the good from the bad. We wouldn’t be able to appreciate it if we didn’t have those chills that come into our lives. So again, just the same message of embracing change, embracing things that might be kind of uncomfortable. I’m sure there’s some people listening that do not love it, that wish it was always summer.

Um, that don’t want to dig out their sweaters. Oh my goodness, I can’t let this pass without talking about sweaters. I have so many sweaters I am like pretty much wear a hoodie all day long Every day as soon as it gets cool until it’s you know, the end of spring. I love it I love wrapping up in a blanket.

I love putting extra blankets on I love warming up my have this rice pad that my friend made me that has Wonder Woman fabric and I warm it up and And I hop in bed, and I put it on my back, and it just keeps me warm and toasty, and it’s the best.

But we wouldn’t get to enjoy that if there wasn’t the change in the seasons. And the last thing I want to share, a little bit of a bonus, um, is, death is inevitable. Autumn shows us that death is inevitable. Like, everything’s going to die. Everything’s going to shut down. Every leaf is going to fall. But, it also teaches us that so is rebirth.

We know that spring is going to come. We know that if we draw inward, if we protect ourselves, if we let go of what’s not helping us, if we see the beauty, if we do all of these things. There is rebirth, and I believe this for each one of us. If you are feeling fear or dread as we go into a darker season, know that there’s rebirth.

But there’s beauty where we are. You don’t only get to be happy when it’s spring. We have to live in the moment that we’re in and live in the season that we’re in. So I encourage you to look around you. Get outside, take in these lessons, even if you live somewhere in the world where you don’t have orange leaves, there’s still cycles.

There’s still flowers and palm fronds and, and all kinds of things that are going to die in a cyclical manner and regrow. There’s lessons everywhere. I really, really encourage you to find them if you want to. And if you don’t, that’s okay too. But thank you for being here. I’m so grateful for October’s.

It’s a beautiful season. I’ll see you next time.

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