Like a Tree (A Personal Update)
It’s a complex dance, keeping a blog with a heart to consistently speak (my) truth. I’ve struggled with this idea more in the last 6 months than I can tell you. And, that’s just the thing. I can’t tell you.
Besides the heartbreaking moments that brought both grief and a harsh awareness to our nation this year, the knowledge of my own personal mountains made it ever-so difficult to write about the life’s simple delights. It’s odd, I know. Perhaps now is the best time to keep up with those little things that bring great joy. But there is also a time to gird our loins, so-to-speak, and fight.
So, that’s what I’ve been doing...or so I thought. I spent a lot of time fighting for a way out of a situation that seemed to squash all my creative energy, certain abilities that I valued in myself, abilities I even used to identify myself. It’s been a vain struggle. I’d been very reluctant to accept where I was and instead of trying to make it work, my mantra became one of those things that you’d pin on an inspiration board: “I am not a tree. I can move!”
But the thing about trees? They have roots that grow deep in love, they have branches that reach out and provide shade, and they bare fruit. The thing about trees is that they grow.
In the last 6 months I’ve felt inadequate. Undervalued. Misunderstood. I’ve longed for truth more than ever and in that, withdrawn from social media and writing. Inspiration evaded me. I rarely worked out. I burned so many sweet potatoes (that Matty still graciously ate) and threw out failed pots of soup. I put all my energy into keeping us afloat: cleaning, keeping a budget, running errands. Any extra energy was spent trying to get the hell out of my situation. I didn’t carve out time for yoga, or reading, or dreaming up new ideas. If I did try, I failed. And since failing doesn’t feel great, I brilliantly stopped trying to do things that might end up in failure. Oh, and in the meantime? I compared myself to other people who I perceived as not failing. Which was everyone, obviously.
It’s difficult to write this because I suppose it means that I’ve achieved some kind of awareness and I’m finally ready to accept where I am. Honestly, I’m still a whiny child inside and if someone doesn’t pick me up and give me ice cream then I might throw a tantrum like a 2-year-old who missed a nap.
But the truth is I’m not a 2-year-old who wants to be held. I’m a 31-year-old.
Who kinda, actually, wants to be a tree.
“And he shall be like a tree firmly plants [and tended] by the streams of water, ready to bring forth its fruit in its season; its leaf also shall not fade or wither; and everything he does shall prosper [and come to maturity].” Psalm 1:3