It’s finally Autumn – a new season.

It’s an annual process that marks the ‘normal’ transition from Summer to Winter. We know that in Autumn the weather gets cooler – old leaves begin to fall and trees must feel exposed!

But, despite it being ‘expected’, any transition is tough hey? Even for humans! Transitions lead to change. They force us to be outside our comfort zone and only make us more vulnerable. It seems easier to stay put in the discomfort of now than face the next phase – deal with the unknown. We often resist any change as we conjure up all the negative and uncomfy things that may eventuate in the change process. But in our negative mindset are we dismissing the possibility of new growth?

Learning to walk again without my frame is a transition much like Autumn. Can I wait for the Spring? Skip the painful and exposing transition? But in Autumn, leaves need to fall. Similarly, in my transition to the next stage of rehab, I need to fall.I need to step out of my comfort zone and fall in a supported way.

But for me, the act of falling is terrifying. Falling and then the act of getting up takes effort, too much effort. I definitely focus on the many negatives that might happen if I hit the ground – from breaking a bone to further worsening my vision. I resist attempting to step out of my security zone by focussing on these.

But without falling I am not challenging myself and quite often I surprise myself with how I do react when I do drop. Without practising falling, I can’t practise getting back up. So I try….

I know falling will happen. I know that I am going to look worse and become more vulnerable. But what makes this all easier to withstand is that I make sure I’m in the best environment to fall – I practise my ‘aidless’ walk on a soft grassy oval. That I always practise with another to support me and simultaneously hold me accountable. Also, I try to incorporate a meaningful activity into it – to make it more enjoyable. For example -walking my dog, Gilbert – I enjoy it and it benefits him too. Lastly, I try to complete this ‘falling/walking’ practice at roughly the same time each week. It now has become routine, expected in my regime.

So in Autumn, leaves do fall, but consider that change, and all the associated discomfort, is necessary for renewal. Choose to fall in a supported way.

Trees become exposed. Leaves fall. But remember, new growth eventually emerges.