I think of Jean Shinoda Bolen writing about trees, the deep relationships people have with them, and I remember. I remember myself as a toddler, perhaps younger, lying on my grandfather’s chest, high up in a thick tree, napping together. I remember waiting impaitently for my father who was always studying seeds, and leaves, and fruits in trees all around our family farm, learning them, photographing them. I remember laughing at him in my youthful ignorance, when he planted a forest of native species, high on the mountain, wondering if any of us would ever see it fully matured. I have seen it grown, magnificent and powerful, holding the soil, gifting us with breathable air, and sharing its vital energy.
I remember the tree I sat in as an adolescent, on the overlook, as if on a throne, with a view of the entire world below me. I remember the tree that my child-self built a secret hideout under, and the grove that cradled me when I needed solitude but feared loneliness.
I remember the physical and emotional pain I felt when, before this latest conscious awakening to our interconnectedness, I had to finish off a tree that had been felled to build the house I moved into, and that had managed to survive, pushing thin branches of leaves up towards the sky, threatening to bring down our walls. Even before I remembered my knowing, I had the inner prompting to whisper my grief to it and ask its forgiveness as I cut the branches away.
I remember the first time I offered Reiki to the tree beside the home I live in now, how I felt the energy was received. And I remember the first time I went to a towering oak, seeking guidance and clarity in the midst of the overwhelm of my life. Its energy enveloped me, comforted me, and it shared with me wordless wisdom that I cannot translate even today.
So I stop today, and I honor that tree, and all trees, in my past and my present, and those that are beyond my understanding of me, on other lands, other continents. All those trees to whom we are related.