Up a tree …

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Today, I did something I haven’t done in at least 20 years, if not 30 or so. I climbed a tree. I was an avid tree climber as a child. When I was a teen, I had a favorite tree I would climb to read books in. I loved being above the ground, possibly able to watch people and other happenings going on below me, whether of animals or people. I was having a period of detachment today.

Not really happy with how my day, or my son and husband’s responses to me, were going. In a spontaneous moment, I decided to walk the path down our hill and examine the trees and underbrush. I had wanted my husband to do this with me, but it didn’t seem to be happening. I’m frustrated about that, as we’ve lived here for over six months now and he has yet to walk beyond the back yard with me. So, I set off on my own. As I came to a cluster of trees, seen a bit off the path, growing haphazardly and leaning almost horizontal to the ground, I was drawn to them. Drawn back to my childhood and time spent alone on a branch with leaves all around me. I climbed up several before going back to one that suited my mood.

Once out on the limb, I laid down along it, hooking my feet back on the branch behind me. The sun was shining through the leaves so I stretched out and was able to pillow my hand under my head. Closing my eyes, I listened to all the sounds around me. Birds hopped around the undergrowth and leaves, creating a shuffling sound. Other animals; dogs, horses and other birds – as well as people, could be heard in the distance from different directions.

As I lay there, wanting to fall asleep connected to the tree, I wondered if my husband or son would come looking  for me. I hadn’t said a word about going anywhere. I just went. I wondered, if they did come, if they would see me stretched along the tree limb or if they would walk right by. But they didn’t come looking. Was I missed at all? That thought leads to a myriad of other thoughts of which I won’t pursue during this post. I enjoyed the peace and mindfulness of my time in the tree. It was restful.

Perhaps it’s good that no one looked for me. If they had found me, the tree would no longer be a special place. As it is, I feel that I can return there and no one will be the wiser. It felt good, as if I were nurturing myself – or at least the child within. I always liked those secret places and actions of mine when a child. It made me feel a bit wild, like an animal; a connection I’ve always felt solace in. While in the tree, I wasn’t a middle aged, fat woman with “issues.” It was just me. Something in me that will always be different, a bit ferral.

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4 thoughts on “Up a tree …

    • Thanks for your comment about expectations. Although I wanted to be found (to counter my fear of abandonment) it was a good experience to rediscover what I used to feel when climbing trees. It is hard to let go of those expectations. For me, it’s part of my abandonment fears. But it was good to have that time, that experience of connectedness with my environment. If anyone HAD come, it would have been cut short. It did give me a period of mindful quietness. So often we spend time in nature, but never really give ourselves the opportunity to experience what is going on around us. That’s what I’ve always liked about climbing trees. It makes you be more aware..

      Visualize

  1. It’s great….you and the tree.
    It sounds like your tree time allowed you to transcend stuff…. to the you that is timeless and connected to nature….. nature around you and inside yourself to your wild nature.

    It warms my heart.

    I too, had special secret places in nature and found solace there and also ran around in the woods, trees, streams and seashore pretending to be a wild girl.

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