I just came in from the orchard - doing what I do most days at this time of the year. I was removing the small buds of potential branches that appear on the lower trunk of the trees in spring. The trees seem exuberant with the warmth of the sun throughout the longer days and the refreshing rain, sparse this year, but most welcome. Their desire seems to be all about growing every which way they can. However the suckers take needed energy from the tree’s main purpose: nourishing the seeds that will become walnuts. Removing the suckers is my way of helping the trees to focus.
And while I do that the trees help me as well.
During the past three years I have been grieving and mourning the death of my brothers, John and Pat. Creating tributes to honor them has helped a lot. Now something that seemed impossible in 2012 has happened. I am stepping into a new stage: reclaiming life after loss. It is exciting to feel alive again. And like the walnut trees I find myself pulled in many directions - anywhere I can grow is great, right?
As I begin to come alive again that may be true for a little while. But I too need to focus. What budding forth will bring life and fruitfulness to be shared with others? Can I cut back on the activities that distract me from “what is mine to do”?
Tomorrow as I remove the suckers from the trees, I will reflect on the pruning – the choices – I need to make for my new life.