The first tree I fell in love with was a southern magnolia.  That tree, as I recall, was absolutely huge — with low lying branches where a little girl could sit, sheltered from the Texas heat.  In the spring it produced giant, fragrant blossoms — larger than my hands — that gave off the most heavenly scent imaginable.  My mother used to put the blooms in bowls of water around the house so that the rooms would fill with the smell of magnolia.

When I moved to New England for college, I was completely blown away by my first fall sugar maple.  You see, there are no sugar maples in Texas . . . little did I know that such a glorious tree even existed.  I wrote long letters to everyone I knew (this was pre-email, you know) saying, “You can’t believe the trees up here!”

And now, I still love trees.  I love them for many reasons but in particular, because they model for me ‘graceful transition’.  I watch a maple outside my office window who effortlessly drops leaves in the autumn, ungrudgingly displays bare branch bones in the winter, graciously sprouts new leaves in the spring, and fully spreads green foliage in the summer.  As far as I can tell, the tree doesn’t feel like a victim . . . isn’t resentful . . . doesn’t whine about each new season’s demands. 

This blog is about my reflections on transitions because let’s face it:  transitions can be extremely painful, difficult, and confusing.  Few of us face them as graciously as the tree faces its natural rhythm of change.  But we can learn . . . we can keep growing through every transition . . . and we can take the tree’s cue, remembering that the end of one cycle is always the beginning of another.

Welcome to the Ashley Davis Bush blog!

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