Bethesda Workshops 

a place for healing from sexual addiction in Nashville, TN

Scenery for Life

In keeping with a tradition of many years, David and I went to the mountains this past weekend for our wedding anniversary. I’ve always loved the change of seasons, and even when we lived hundreds of miles from the closest deciduous tree, we traveled every year to experience the fall foliage. Seeing the panorama of colors is good for my soul.

This year I was repeatedly captured by the unfolding palette. Our section of middle Tennessee is still largely green, though splotched in places with brown where lack of rain dried out the leaves before they could turn.

The mountains, though, are a drapery of nuanced color. Multiple shades of green are painted with every red in the spectrum, along with yellow, orange, gold and even purple. Some of the colors are muted and others burst with vibrancy. Perhaps it’s my imagination, but I thought I saw some white glistening on the highest peaks, which is reminiscent of the unexpected snow we encountered on our honeymoon. In places the vista looks like a quilt with distinct patches of individual colors, and in other areas the landscape is a kaleidoscope of indistinct hues.

The mountain topography is equally varied. In higher elevations, they spike in a series of points that dot the cloud cover. In other areas gently rolling hills spool across the landscape like a soft cotton comforter. Assorted valleys dip between the mountain peaks – some wide and inviting and others sharp chasms of darkness.

I recognize the triteness of using changing seasons and scenery as a metaphor, yet the apt image kept returning to mind. Life, and especially a long term relationship, is a broad tapestry as multifaceted as the changing leaves and landscape we saw last weekend. Over 33 years, David and I have seen beautiful days and dark ones, have journeyed high and low, climbed taxing mountains and rested in luscious valleys.

For good or ill, each moment felt as if it were the only reality. Yet when viewed from the perspective of three plus decades, the colors of life form an astonishing tapestry. So it is for all of us when we have eyes to see.

And the embroidery thread is always weaving. When we arrived home late Sunday evening, we saw that the sugar maple we planted in the back yard when our children were small had started to redden.

Marnie C. Ferree

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