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My Tree of Life

Sam and me
In memory of Sam, March 2, 1998 – April 30, 2007.

It was a ten-inch tall mini-tree in a small plastic pot that sat on the coffee table in the living room. Sprinkled with silver glitter and embellished with tiny silver ornaments. An impulse purchase at Target one December years ago. An attempt at decorating for the holidays, at living.

silver ornaments

After a while, I dusted off the glitter, removed the silver balls, and re-potted the small pencil-thin tree. I thought it would like living on the patio, so out it went. I hoped I could keep it alive. But eventually, it withered and turned brown. Too much sun and water? Not enough?

I couldn’t throw it out. And I couldn’t watch it die. So, I moved it to the backyard, around the corner near the A/C unit. Out of sight, out of mind. A few years passed. And in that mostly shady spot, sitting all alone, neglected in its faded green pot, the little tree appeared to be alive. Pale green, but still green.  

I re-planted it in the same spot where it had come back to life. Not wanting to mess with progress. It was still small, only three feet tall. And I hoped, yet again, that I could keep it alive.


About eleven years have passed. And this is what I see through my backyard-facing window. A beautiful twelve-foot-tall tree that continues to grow and live. Its two trunks are woven together so it is actually two trees in one. Brothers? Mother and son? Whatever I want it to be, it is.

My hope. My progress. My tree of life. ♥  

Tree Backyard Apr 2019


If you’re attempting to “live” again after the loss of a loved one, you’ll forever have to weave through the web of things that will wither and die. With time though, and sometimes neglect, you will begin to see the pale green again. And, with multiple re-planting attempts, you will grow and you will make progress. Sometimes it happens when you’re out of sight, out of mind, or sitting alone in the shade. And whatever you want it to be, it will be. 

Your hope. Your progress. Your tree of life.

Categories: Rewriting Life After Loss

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Rewriting life since the sudden death of my nine-year-old son, Sam (2007).
Trying to LEARN, think, remember, IMAGINE, cope, care, read, EAT, write, live, LAUGH, listen, enjoy, walk, meditate, stretch, watch, stop, BREATHE...and keep going.

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