Sunday, July 14, 2019

Even In Darkness, Something Beautiful Still Grows.

Painting by Veronica Lee
I'm all about growth; personal and otherwise. Growth of anything takes time, perseverance, mastery, and attention. This is true for plants and humans alike.

It's been almost two years since we first planted our trees. Six, to be precise. Pears, peaches, and plums. Two of each.

We have a sizable amount of land, and our property can accommodate the six fruit trees, easily, with much room to spare. We spent the better part of the first year nurturing and caring for these trees.

My husband was most excited about the trees. He checked on them every morning on his way to work. He still does, sometimes. In the beginning, while he was gone, I would water the trees just as I was supposed to.

As my health declined, so did the health of the fruit trees. I never made this correlation, before, but I'm sure it's no coincidence. I was less able to attend to them as I should have. Had they been children, I am sure I would have been reported to some sort of authority. Alas, they are trees, and not toddlers. No one cared about their well-being but my husband and I. And of course, the trees.

Three of the trees had been in rapid decline for the past year. (Doesn't this sound eerily familiar?). Those 3 trees now adorn the front yard, still firmly in the ground, mind you. Slightly reminiscent of some sort of a postmodern art exhibit. Their branches still reach toward the sky, with a downward and leafless "meh".

The other 3 trees? Thriving and growing Two have begun to bear fruit. What makes 3 trees die and wither when the other 3 blossomed? They all received the same care. They were all planted into the same soil.

Likewise, how can people raised together with the same parents, same upbringing and the same eating habits acquire different predispositions to chronic illnesses? Much the same as with the fruit trees, we may never know.

My sister, Sherie, had issues with her heart. She had 5 heart attacks before she decided something needed to change. She and I are very much alike in the sense that once we make our mind up to do something, nothing can stop us.

She is putting her fortitude to work and correcting her issues with the food she eats. She is making tremendous progress. I am incredibly proud of her! I, on the other hand, developed a disease that food just can't cure.

We both contributed to our own separate health issues. We both had a lifetime worth of pizza and cheeseburger with fries on the side, and then some. Facts are facts. We sometimes ate poorly, we both smoked, yet I'm the one who developed an incurable disease that is advancing as quickly as a rickety raft in the Snake River Rapids.

Two people, same raising, but our bodies have responded to what have done to them in different ways.

In spite of what we are experiencing, we've learned a thing or two. Our mindsets have changed. Because of our illnesses, how we view the world has changed. Our level of mindfulness has grown tenfold. Our level of compassion for our fellow human beings has expanded. We are more conscious of how our actions affect the world.

I can't do anything for my lungs aside from alleviating some of the symptoms temporarily. The issues that I have will always return. My lungs are shot, much like my other 3 trees that died.

But like the 3 fruit trees that continue to produce, I can still reach into my mind and pull out an amazing peach from time to time. I feel a closeness to humankind I never felt before. I am more aware of what is really important in life, now. From this tragic outcome that has become this chapter of my life, I have developed a new awakening. The spectrum of awareness of what is really important in life has become my fruit.

There is still darkness, still pain,... still life lessons to learn. For me, the biggest lessen has been that even in darkness, something beautiful still grows.


  1. I love you sooo much! I just want you to know you are an amazing woman and I'm so very proud of you, I'm your biggest fan, you never ceases to amaze me sister! You are a fighter, like a heavyweight champion POW! :)

    1. You just made me smile so big ear to ear! Thank you, beautiful sister! I'm so proud of you and happy we hatched from the same carton of eggs! I'm YOUR biggest fan! I love you! Thank you!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.