During a walk in the woods amidst the height of the fall colors a friend was explaining why the leaves turn those brilliant yellows, oranges, and reds. Actually, she said, chlorophyll is draining out of the leaves at the end of the season. The color underneath the green camouflage is the true color of the leaf and we get a glimpse of its beauty before it drops off.
The turning of the leaves now reminds my friend of the old people she is observing when she visits her mother, who is in a nursing home recovering from a stroke. It seems to her that people often show their true colors when life strips away some of the camouflage they used in the green years.
Some become shriveled up old brown leaves while others show beautiful hues and colors that are a delight to be around and gaze upon. We were discussing what makes the difference in what color you show before dropping off into eternity.
I wonder if early choices such as gratitude verses sour grapes; hope verses cynicism or faith verses bitterness are deciding factors. Whatever you decide when life is in full bloom is what you get in the end when the winter of pain and illness blankets life.
Sometimes it is exceeding difficult to give thanks instead of complain in the daily grind of life. But I want to make every effort now. As my winter approaches I’d rather others get a glimpse of beauty as my true colors show.