Yes, it has been about a month since I have posted. I have gotten so behind on posting the exciting events of summer that I get overwhelmed when I think about posting. I do intend of posting some grand highlights of my life soon, but in the meantime I shall entertain you with another little ditty.
I just finished an online class I was doing this summer and here is a piece I wrote for it. Don't worry, it's not even close to being as long as the last piece I posted.
The True Tree Hugger
I always thought Sister Nelson was a bit crazy. Her hair was always in a tight bun at the top of her head, revealing her discerning eyes. The way she dressed herself in long skirts and shirts the color of pale earth tones were not the least bit flattering on her figure that proved she had a big family. The stern way in which she taught my Sunday school class of preteens seemed to encourage us to mock her afterwards.
Most of Sister Nelson’s lessons went in one ear and out the other, except for one.
“We all have Spirits, my little brothers and sisters,” she spatters as she motions to everyone in the small Sunday school room lit only by an open window. “And even though someday we will all die, our Spirits will live on!”
Internally, I roll my eyes as I assume I had heard this lesson before.
“And not only do we humans have Spirits, but everything has a Spirit. I have a Spirit. You have a spirit. Birds have spirits. Cats have spirits! Even...um…this table has a spirit!”
“A table? How can a table have a spirit?” a fellow class member asks as we all whisper and giggle.
“ Well, look at the table. What is it made out of? Wood! Wood comes from trees and trees definitely have spirits.”
Logan Canyon had never felt so refreshing as it did one day this past winter. Logan City had been suffering from a polluted overcast season that happens in the winter months. I had forgotten how much I had missed the sunshine and fresh air as my husband and I were snowshoeing across a field covered with glistening powder. The crisp air that brushed across my nose with each crunching step reminded me of how excited I was to be alive.
I was in the zone. Having a husband who is about a foot taller than me forces my legs to move twice their natural pace. Determined to keep up on this excursion, I focused on my pace more than the breathtaking scenery around me. With my determination unknown to my husband, he got caught up with our friends we were with, leaving me alone.
Eventually, I stop to rest. As I lift my head to look around, I become overwhelmed. I notice that I stopped in the middle of the most beautiful patch of white birch trees I have even seen. The setting sun peeks in between the trees creating a golden aura around each trunk. For a moment I feel frozen in time. It’s like there is a force coming from the trees keeping me locked in place so we can exchange a moment. My heart starts to drown in unconditional love being exchanged between us.
Trees definitely have spirits echoes in my mind.
Today, at the Gardener’s Market, I bought a pendant made out of a gourd with the dark outline of a tree and its branches carved into it. When I passed it in small booth owned by a woman in a long flowing skirt and braided hair, I knew I had to buy it. I resisted the purchase until the marked was coming to a close and I chased down the flowing skirt merchant as she was leaving. Now, I wear it around my neck.
Starting at it, I start to contemplate my love for trees. My mind wanders back to my childhood and almost every memory is associated with a tree. Like the time I climbed higher than any boy in my neighborhood. Or the time I ran away from home and hid in a tree until I got hungry and went back home. And there were the many times I pretended the tree in my backyard was Grandmother Willow from the movie Pocahontas. I would often go to it for guidance in my, oh, so important childhood decisions.
I look around my apartment and notice the artwork and décor of my home consists largely of different depictions of trees. My photo albums of my adventures all over the world each feature specific trees that stuck out to me. What is with trees and me? Perhaps, it is their quiet dignity. Or how every part of them is there to serve. How their leaves provide oxygen to breath, their sap is used to eat, their wood provides building materials. Even the way they encompass the earth creates shade on a hot summer day and adds beauty to any landscape. They are the perfect example of humility and selflessness.
Eventually my thoughts take me back to Sister Nelson. Maybe she wasn’t so crazy after all. Maybe she is wiser than I ever gave her credit for. Or maybe, I am just as crazy as she is. Whatever the case, I know I am thankful for those selfless giants. Somehow they show me that everything is connected to each other, that there is something bigger than myself looking after me, and that no matter what happens, it is all going to be ok.