Home > Family, Parenting, Uncategorized > Our old tree

Our old tree

One of my landlords came by
Thursday evening to explain
they need to remove the tree
in front of our garage;
the tree’s roots
are beginning
to impact
the garage’s

Walking with
my six-year-old son later,
I explained what would
be happening

He got really quiet
and clouds gathered
on his face

15ddlmbBorn in California,
he is nevertheless–
like his mom–an
he loves

“But can’t they do
something else?
Can’t they just move it?”
he queried with trembling voice

I stopped
and hugged him.
“They can’t,
But you know what?”

“What?” he asked,
gazing up at my face
instead of down
at the ground

“We can go buy
our own tree,
and keep it in a pot
in the backyard here.
And then, when we
finally buy our own house,
we can plant the tree
in our own yard, and
it’ll remind us
of our old tree
at our old home.
How does that sound?”

“Yeah!” he said,
and we began

“But I’m still sad,

“I know you are, sweetie,”
I said as I ruffled his hair.
“And that’s okay.”


  1. August 28, 2016 at 6:45 am

    This was beautiful, Deborah! Such a beautiful convo with Little Jedi. I’m a tree lover too. Our beach has been ravaged by numerous storms over the last 18 months and trees keep getting washed away and you find them lying like corpses on the sand. We’ve even had bulldozers on the beach and they’re back again, shifting sand and they’ve put in sand bags. In this instance, nature is doing the destruction but its still sad. I look forward to hearing about what kind of tree you choose for your pot.
    xx Rowena

    • August 28, 2016 at 7:02 am

      Aaaw, man. Li’l D’s heart would be breaking!

      One plan for yesterday involved going and choosing the tree. The day ended up being not at all what we envisioned, but that just means we get to choose our tree next weekend.

      (We’ll probably pick up a couple of herb plants, too, thanks to a fortuitously timed conversation with my manager. So lovely to think what we’ll hopefully help grow and thrive.)

      • August 28, 2016 at 9:22 pm

        Much better entering the growth phase! Little Jedi has such a beautiful heart and it’s great to see that encouraged and developed. Remember how boys used to be told to “toughen up” and there’s still a lot of that about. I went to an all girls’ school and had no idea that it’s not cool for boys to sing and they stop dancing and it’s all a bit sad being them shut down such a huge part of what it is to be human. Boys definitely need advocacy too! xx Rowena

  2. August 28, 2016 at 7:57 am

    I can relate, I used to work for a company who had a beautiful birch tree in their front lawn, new VP cut it down one weekend because it hid the window! He did not even work in that office. I planted lots of plants on their lawn and walls but not in front! We saw the beauty from our window, but never he when he came maybe twice a year!

  3. August 28, 2016 at 1:13 pm

    Such a sweet soul.

    • August 29, 2016 at 7:40 pm

      Even when he’s grumpy and tired, I can’t help but see his sweetness shining.
      (His brother is awesome, too, just … in a very different way. ♥)

  4. August 28, 2016 at 1:15 pm

    YES to trees. As an aside the Ents were the character I most loved when I read Lord of the Rings, and I still (decades later) mourn that the Entwives were never found.
    Love your easing of your boy’s pain. Love that he feels it. He has a huge heart.

    • August 29, 2016 at 7:40 pm

      I loved the ents! I’m looking forward to the day when Li’l D feels ready for the movies, which will likely be a few years before the books. I love to imagine the conversations we’ll have!

  5. Paul
    September 1, 2016 at 8:05 am

    So sad to see trees go. I wish there were another way as well. Excellent compromise Deborah.

  6. September 5, 2016 at 7:24 pm

    Beautiful heart, your little boy has. ❤

  1. August 28, 2016 at 3:42 pm

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