A memory flashed back to my awareness today. This was a welcomed one. We were renting a duplex in the city of Austin. My son was young and, even though we were poor because of it, I chose to be a stay at home mom.
One day I woke up, went out the back door and noticed something vastly different. It was so bright! Instantly, I realized why.
The city had cut down a tree at a neighboring backyard and it took all of our shade away. Shade that gave us solace. Shade that kept my banana tree thriving in this drought-like climate. Shade that gave us comfort.
I cried. I was so devastated for my loss but also the loss of the tree, my friend.
As I sat there in grief, I heard and saw the workers in another yard, looking as if another tree was going down.
This is where instinct kicked in. I doubt I would have had the same reaction had I been younger and unsure of myself. But at that time in my life, I was striving to live a more authentic life and I was awakening to who I was and listening to the internal messages I received.
I walked over to where they were and had a friendly conversation. They told me that the city was doing cleanup, cutting down trees near wires. They also told me that owners were giving them permission.
I got it. I understood. But if I remember correctly, there was no real threat. Trees could be trimmed, trees could be saved.
I remember the stand off. I told them I couldn’t leave. I became one with the tree.
I remember the awkward silence. The gentle amusement on their faces. They were kind and I wasn’t moving.
As these were all rental properties, miraculously I got the owner’s name and number and I gave him a call (while standing by the tree). He lived in another state. I expressed my sorrow and concern with cutting down his tree. And amazingly and feeling so relieved, he agreed.
I passed the phone to the workers and listening to the owner, they packed up and left.
That was the day I saved a tree.
It is a memory that makes me smile with pride and joy for that gentle tree.