October 9, 2013 by updatedhomemaker
As I have passed by this old neighborhood tree on many a walk, it always gets me thinking about all the times it has stood through. Now it stands with its branches trimmed and leaves barely grow forth even in the height of summer. Knotty branches and crooks in its armor remain. Still it exudes strength. It is at the end of life.
It makes me reflect on my recent journey with my mother to Arizona to explore retirement options. She is approaching the later years of her life. She is taking time to form the vision of what she would like her later years of life to look like. Talking about later years mean there will be an end to the years. That is hard to think about. Intertwined with the end is all the life she wishes to yet live. She wants a sense of community. She wants to view the beauty of nature. She wants to connect with people with mutual interests. She wants less work and more fun. I can relate to all of these wants. My specific wish list may look a bit different, but I respect my mom’s wishes, her life and her time.
The old tree has had an ever changing community around it. It is a survivor. When I arrived here eight years ago, there was a closed garden center sitting in its shadow. The building has since been torn down and the overgrown patches of the concrete drive and parking lot remain. The old tree was able to remain as space was made for the expansion of a two lane highway to a four lane highway.
A little way down the road, a home was torn down to make way for the road’s expansion. For a while, a pile of bricks from the demolished fireplace stood on its cracked concrete foundation. Now there is only the cracked and overgrown concrete foundation remaining. Etched into the corner of the concrete is the name Lucy from 1959. I wonder if she could imagine the fate of the once new home.
It is hard to predict the future, but we all try to plan for it, survive and thrive. Like the old tree that no longer has the energy to produce many leaves, my mother’s energy is less than it used to be for major undertakings. Their limbs no longer bend with the ease they once used to. They don’t stand as tall as they once did, but still are remarkable and unique. They have made a place in the world. Their experiences are similar in having felt life, youth, growth, change, and the weathering of storms that have left a mark. They provided protection for the now mature around them while they were growing. Now they are protected by the younger around them.
This post is part of a brave blogging link-up that’s part of Liv Lane’s How To Build a Blog You Truly Love ecourse. As a participant, I was challenged to step outside my comfort zone and share something with you that felt especially brave. See all our submissions here: http://blog.livlane.com/2013/10/feeding-the-feelings/