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Friday, November 7, 2014

Be a tree.

Every once a great long while, I write a little letter to one of my kids and save it.  I had always intended for it to be this great volume that they'd get to read on graduation or something.  All kinds of life wisdom imparted as well as a general sense of knowing how loved they were through the busyness of life.  Well, my volume is pretty thin as I seem to remember about once a year, if that.  I managed to set some words to paper last week, and I came across this nugget for several years back written for Grace.


“Sometimes it’s good to be the tree.”

The other night, we read The Giving Tree. As usual I cried.  I’m not sure I have ever read that story without tears streaming down my face.  I don’t think I’d read it since becoming a parent though.  Bill looked at me and suddenly said, “Oh he wrote that book about his mom, didn’t he?”  It made so much sense. 

Later, we put you to bed.  You were fighting it, as always.  At one point, you grabbed my head and pulled me close so my head was resting on your face.  I admit, I wasn’t very comfortable.  I looked over at Bill, and said, “Sometimes it’s good to be the tree.” 

Some people get mad when they read The Giving Tree.  It's easy to focus on how much the boy takes the tree for granted.  And I know as a parent, I sure empathize with that sentiment.  But at least in the month of Thanksgiving as we move into what I hope is a reflective and joyous time of year, I am going to focus on being grateful for the trees in my life.  A mom who never declines a request to pick up my kids and folds about 90% of my laundry.  A husband who puts up with all the ways I add "busy" to our lives. Friends who are always willing help with the kid shuffle.  Without support none of us would grow into strong trees ourselves.  To be there for our kids and friends and other family members when they need us.  As strange as it sounds, at least today, I'm also going to appreciate the opportunity to be taken for granted.  

I like being a tree. 

And if we are all trees, then we become a forest. 

"And the tree was happy."

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