I absolutely love when I catch myself living in the moment. Lately, those times are sporadic, and scarce. To my delight, today was one of those times. While eating breakfast, my posture facing the patio door, I looked out and traced the boundaries of our property. My eyes focused on the lush green foliage from the treescape, and its divergent characteristics.
There had been trees on the land before we arrived, but not many, except on the adjacent city lot. I remember when my husband planted more trees to create a natural fence for privacy. I could hardly imagine then, that the sticks he would plant in the ground, would grow to be the deciduous shade trees they are today. I am unable to name them all, but what they have in common are lustrous leaves, durability and adaptability.
My eyes were drawn to an older tree, its bark badly peeling, branches thinner, some taken out by storms, and others cut down because of being weak and fragile. We had thought often about cutting the entire tree down, but year after year, as it turns out the tree is always reliable. Its leaves fall quicker than the others, and we barely expect them to return in the Spring, but they do.
It stands taller than the other trees and stands out among them. I am always looking for symbolism during moments of reflection. Today, the tree taught me a few lessons. It taught me that although it was older, thinner and declining, it still had much to offer. I made this observation as I watched a tree squirrel search for a trunk to shimmy up. The rodent appeared to frustrate itself with the younger, denser trees, and excitedly chose the older tree for its scamper. The trunk on the mature tree was apparently more suited for adventure.
Lesson: The tree is still useful.
I noticed that the grown-up tree flirted with the wind, more than the others. Taller and leaner, the branches effortlessly swayed in the breeze.
Lesson: The older one becomes, it is a blessing to shed some weight. Being lighter allows freedom for the flow. The tree showed me that the flow is so beautiful, younger trees submit to its representation, as they struggle to find their place in the ecosystem.
Finally, the tree showed me it lives. In spite of its shedding of leaves, brittle bark and failing limbs, it still sings its own song. The tree is resilient, it has seen some things, and it is happy to keep on living.