Friday, November 4, 2011
Planting a Seed and Successfully Growing a Tree
A year and a half ago I planted an acorn. I watered it, nurtured it, and sent it all of my positive energy to it in hopes that it would grow into a beautiful, strong and courageous oak tree. I waited patiently, knowing that the life inside a seed takes time and the right conditions to be awakened, but too much time had gone by without any sign of the acorn ever opening it's eyes to the light of the world. It got to the point where I gave up on my little acorn. I thought I had picked a dud acorn that would never sprout life, so I started looking for a new seed to plant. Months had gone by since I had given up hope on a tree ever growing when an unexpected green sprout started to emerge from the soil. I was so excited when I saw the growth I could hardly contain myself, but I didn't tell many people because it was too early to tell if this sprout was a tree or just a weed. If it was my tree, the timing was perfect. I had just lost my companion and my current scenery was getting to be overly explored. I was ready to dedicate all of my time and energy into this tree and explore all of it's branches. After a week went by, the sprout had grown enough to tell that the growth was indeed a tree. My initial reaction was surprising. I immediately burst into tears, and not tears of joy. They were tears of disappointment. I had been waiting for this moment for a year and a half and it was finally here, so why was I disappointed? I mean what did I expect? An instant full grown tree? It made me question my intention for planting the acorn in the first place. I felt selfish for not wanting to give this tree a chance and I couldn't provide a clear answer of why I didn't want to help this tree grow and reach it's full potential. I wasn't scared of it or unsure if I would be able to make it grow, it just didn't feel right, so I started observing this tree more closely; smelling it, touching it, tasting it, meditating next to it. I was spending so much time with this tree trying to figure out what I was going to do, and I was starting to get sick. While meditating and taking in all of the information I was getting from my observations, it occurred to me that this wasn't my tree. This wasn't the oak I planted, but a juniper which had somehow managed to kill my acorn to make room for itself. Yes, it was a tree, but not my tree, and on top of it all, I'm allergic to junipers. So I was then faced with a choice; do I dedicate 27 months of my life to this tree which needs my help, knowing that those will be the hardest 27 months of my life, but in the end coming out a stronger person or do I plant another seed and wait for my oak tree, the tree that I'm really passionate about? Deep down I knew what my decision would be, but people were playing a huge roll in my decision making process. They thought I was crazy for not wanting to jump at the opportunity to help this tree grow because I should take my chance on this tree while I know there is something growing there. Junipers have branches to explore too, they told me. They didn't understand why I would abandon this tree just because it was making me feel sick. In the end, it is my life and my decision. I don't have a good feeling about this juniper and this isn't a tree that I'm passionate about, so when it comes to helping this tree, I won't be putting all of my energy into making it grow healthy and strong. I would rather plant another acorn and wait for a tree that will I love and want to help, not because I feel obligated to. It will be just as much work and just as hard to get it to grow and flourish, but facing the hardships knowing that the end product will be the beautiful oak I wanted in the first place will make it worth it. In the end, there is someone out there who is really passionate about that juniper and will dedicate themselves to helping that tree reach it's full potential.