Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.



I went for a walk at one of my favorite parks a couple days ago. It wasn’t a pretty day but at least it wasn’t raining. Or snowing.

Between winter and spring.

I went because I hadn’t been in awhile and because I was feeling sad about a friend of mine who is going through some tough stuff.

A place to rest and contemplate.

When I got to the park there was a warning at the gate about a prescribed burn. That’s when parts of the land are deliberately burned to ward off weeds and nonnative plants.

A scorched earth walk.

Much of the nature trail area was black, which accentuated the hills that I’m always trying to photograph. For that reason alone I didn’t mind walking along the scorched earth, or the smell that can sometimes be overwhelming.

Overlooking his park, wondering what happened.

As I walked I stopped often to take pictures. No surprise. It took me forever to walk the four miles, but it didn’t feel like forever.

Back in the woods spring is taking hold.

It felt wonderful. Spring is arriving, though slowly. Tiny wildflowers are popping up. More will follow.

So tiny you might miss the evidence of spring right under your feet.

I thought about my friend and hope he is able to come on a walk with me soon. He’d find hope in the woods, even the burned parts.

Sometimes it’s hard to let go.

Of course yesterday, listening to the Supreme Court news, I felt sadness overtaking me again. The world seems to be a darker shade of burned right now.

Nothing but darkness.

I’m trying to remember that deep in the woods hope is poking up from under last years debris.

Little umbrellas of hope.

I think I’m going to need another walk real soon.

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

22 thoughts on “Blackened

  1. I hope your friend is doing better soon. Yes, sad news in the world, hard to believe.


  2. Looks like May Apples are popping up. I like the way the hills stand out. I wonder how long it will take for everything to grow back?

    I hope your friend recovers and is able to take a walk of hope with you soon.


  3. Walks are almost always healing.

    I like that they choose to burn rather than use some sort of chemical weed killer. While it may look really dramatic, seems like it is better for the environment.

    We all need to keep looking for lightness wherever we can during what feels like dark times. Hope your friend finds some soon.


    • I agree about the walking I was in a group of survivors and families of those killed in truck crashes a month or so ago and when the group moderator asked us what we did to lift our spirits I said I try to be outside as much as possible. I always feel better if I can be outside for at least some part of every day. Hopefully with my girl, but even if she’s not into it for a day, I still enjoy being out there.


  4. I’m with Sara. And, as a child, I remember the excitement when folks burned their fields. It was always at night so that the fire was easier to see as it spread. It seemed magical to me. A big crowd of adults and children followed the perimeter of the fire, making sure the fire went where it was supposed to. Funny what memories come back as you age. Anyway, best to your friend. Hope the recovery is swift and complete.


    • They do the burn every few years at each park. I’ve watched them doing it from across a wetland, but most years I come across it after. Katie doesn’t like the smell, and I can imagine that it’s pretty intense for her, so if it’s been recently burned we move on to another park. But I liked the starkness of the hills at this park, and Katie wasn’t there to protest, so I enjoyed myself.


  5. The way things are, sometimes it is hard to even find the words. Thank you for finding them and sharing them with us. Hope your friend can walk with you soon.


  6. The hills are a perfect reflection of how I feel about the way things are going in this world, this country. Hugs for your friend.


  7. The world is way too dark now. I keep looking for the light…it has got to appear sooner or later. I hope sooner. Best wishes for your friend, Dawn.


  8. Here’s hoping your friend’s problems resolve soon. Yes, I agree — a good, long walk outdoors among all of Nature’s offerings is a good place to be renewed. I’m not happy about controlled burns though. Too often, things get out of hand and prized acreage is lost. Yes, Mother Nature has a way of healing herself, but perhaps I lived too many years in Texas to fully appreciate massive fires.


    • Most of our parks are surrounded with swamp. So far we haven’t had a controlled burn get out of control. Though there was a fire between our town and the next caused by someone burning trash in their yard that DID blacken several acres of wetland, so it’s not inconceivable.


  9. So sorry about your friend…and the Supreme Court news, too. It feels good that you were able to find comfort even with the gray skies and controlled burn. Nature offers us so much indeed.


  10. I love that second photo. It’s full of soon-to-be life and hope and joy. Sometimes it’s hard to be happy, but still we can decide, make a choice, to be happy and to spread that feeling. I definitely get joy and happiness (and other feelings too, sure) from your photos Dawn. I really like how honest you are in this blog about your feelings. Hugs for you, and your friend, and for all of us.


  11. Hope things get better for your friend. The blackened areas will soon be full of new growth a brightest shade of green!


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