today is my fifth entry for Vol V of the Sakura Bloom Sling Diaries :: All the Love.


we all know bliss as being extreme joy. perfect happiness.
its something we all reach for. hope to experience.

but can i be honest?
right now its hard to find bliss.
its hard to feel those bliss-ful moments.

our family is going through a lot right now.
a grandfather diagnosed with dementia.
an aunt, lying on her deathbed, waiting for the Lord to call her home.
and in the midst of all of this...
my only sister's wedding.
a time that is expected to have extreme joy, happiness...
and bliss.

it seems that when ever i look around...
i see depression. death. hopelessness...
even in the trees,
falling leaves,
bare branches.

the night before we went to take these photos,
we had just visited our aunt who had taken an even bigger decline.
to be truthful...
i had said what i thought was my last goodbye.
on the way home i sobbed.
i turned on the radio and was comforted by words i couldn't find myself to say.
i am not alone.

i woke up the next morning,
i asked God for grace. to show me His beauty.
to reveal what's truly important and to restore my heart.
on the drive over to the hiking/walking trail,
i felt a stirring in my spirit.
i knew it was more important to really be there for my littles.
to not worry about the "perfect shot".
to open myself to see, to really see what i had asked Him for.
His beauty.

i have always loved this quote,
"every leaf speaks bliss to me,
fluttering from the autumn tree."
-emily bronte

nature calls to my heart.
a walk in the park, by the river,
the earth beneath my feet.
the whispers of the trees telling secrets with the winds.
its healing.
its also revealing.

fall is my favorite season.
the cold, the cozy sweaters,
hot cider and cuddles with books.
the changing leaves.

i vaguely remember thinking a very long time ago,
how most people don't see fall as a depressing time.
the changing colors excite us and fill us with warm thoughts.
it encourages us to reach out and grab a leaf to inspect its beauty.
while walking through those trees and looking at these photos,
it was brought back to my forefront of my mind.

life. death.

with death comes hope.
hope of new life. no pain. no fear.
with grief comes healing.
just as with life, comes death.
there is beauty in ashes.
that is my bliss.
my extreme joy and happiness.
hope is my bliss.

while life is ever-changing and un-expected,
know that there is always hope.
there is always love.
there is always bliss.
usually unexpected bliss.

in the little things that we forget or don't pay much attention to.
beauty in the imperfect.
in the colored leaves.
watch how they fall,
how they dance in the wind.
remember the grace,
the moments of calm and breath-taking beauty they offer.
take those moments and treasure them.

know that as the leaves have blossomed and grown,
how they have provided shade and covering,
delighted our eyes in the passing days,
brought the promise of changing seasons...
that this is just a small glimpse of how our life is.
that we blossom into our calling,
when nurtured and loved.
that we impact those closest to us,
protecting them from the storms,
banding together to offer shelter and growth.
that when our time has come,
we can trust in the wind to take us to our final resting place.
in peace and contentment.
to offer hope to the ones we've left behind,
to prepare the way for the next season to come.

that we can attempt to present a moment of bliss to those whose eyes are open.
it might not be in the most beautiful of packages,
but it will be unmistakable.
and it will always be welcomed.

my littles,
watch the leaves...
for they will teach you the secrets of life.
they will also teach you to hope.
for the next season to come, whatever that may be.
and that hope you have,
remember its bliss...
for it will bring you through,
to whichever path is next.