Tuesday, 14 May 2013
THE TREE OF LIFE
This is the view from my family room window, and it is constantly changing. In Winter it is the stark empty branches framed against a cold blue sky, snow dusting around the trunks of the trees. In Autumn it's a myriad of colors, red, yellow and gold, the leaves of the trees drifting down to form a thick crunchy carpet. In summer the dark green leaves form a canopy of shade from the relentless sunshine, and in Spring, the new growth bursts forth in all its glory. The leaves the trees have been holding on to for so long finally coming to life in an explosion of greens.
I know its cliché but watching the cycle of the trees right outside my window reminds me of the different stages of life. Spring is the beginning of our journey, everything new and bright and fresh. Summer we are in adulthood, strong and healthy, working hard and surviving. We are forming our fruits and building up our stores for what's to come. Autumn is the later part of life, decay is starting to set in and we are preparing for the winter in our lives. But we are still beautiful, rich in color and full of life's experiences. And then there is the winter, when we finally fall in to our slumber, quiet and peaceful.
How many times have we said, "Wow, summer sure went fast!" or "Didn't spring just get here? Man, that flew by." The same goes for life. One day I was 9 years old playing kick the can with the neighbourhood kids, not a care in the world, and suddenly here I am, a grown woman with a family of my own, not a kid anymore. And it sure went fast. Really fast. I am in the August of my life hoping to make it through Autumn and Winter.
The journey of life is an interesting thing. We are all born in to different circumstances. Good ones and some really bad ones. Some are born in to war, hunger and disease and some are born in to a much simpler and easier existence. Just like a tree. You will see a tree growing on the side of a cliff, barely hanging on to life, struggling to survive while another tree is born in to a lush forest, rich in nurturing soil, the perfect temperature and conditions for a long and healthy life. I often puzzle over the randomness of life. Why one way and not the other. I know I will never know the answer, but I think about it anyway.
None of us ever know what's coming our way. Good or bad. It's all the mystery of life which is what makes it so exciting and fulfilling, but scary too. We never know when the journey ends. When will the lumberjack come along and chop us down or a disease set in causing us to wither and die.
On this planet we can only make the best of the moment we are given right now. The past is gone and the future is the unknown, so all that really matters is right here right now. So if right this moment you are drinking a cup of coffee, savor it. Take in it's scent, and enjoy it's robust flavor. If you are sitting by a window, take a moment to look out and enjoy whatever it is that lies beyond, whether its a beautiful forest, an architectural marvel, a skyscraper, or people walking by. Whatever you are doing at this very moment. Enjoy it. Feel it. Experience it. It's our gift. And it's amazing.