The trees of California’s Redwood National Parks are special. Not only are they the world’s tallest trees (up to 379 ft high) and the world’s oldest trees (up to 1800 years old), but redwoods are now among the world’s most endangered trees (sad face). Probably, because it takes 1000 years to grow another one and back in the 1850’s, people really liked paper and staying warm. Thank you, ancestors (side eye).
Anyway, the video above by filmmaker Jesse Rosten got my brain thinking. Watching him capture his “deep affection” for the forests made me wonder about my own personal growth. I started to ask myself questions like: how am I growing now? How tall do I think I can really push myself to grow? How comfortable am I spreading my roots out and absorbing the world that’s around me, trusting that it will give me the nutrients I need to make me happy? (Not very.)
Trees ask none of these questions; they just grow. They just do what they were born to do. And every day for all 1800 years of their lifetime, the universe has given them all they need to do just that; the soil, the light, the space, the water — it’s all there in abundance. So why do we ever doubt that the universe could do the same for us? If a mere tree gets this much love and attention (along with little forest friends), why can’t we?
When we over-think less, when we trust and spread out, when we give love and shelter to people and let them give it back to us — we’re going to grow. And we will grow tall and strong and just the way we want to. It is probably the one universal theme that every human must grasp in their life time. When we get out of our own way and let go of our anxieties and fears, we find access to what we really want. In order to truly grow, we simply have to let go.
I also started to think about the kind of tree I wanted to be when I died. Resting is not really my style. And rather than become a tree that falls down to a dry ground without ferns or moss, I want to be the tree whose life sparked the growth of a million things around it, both during and after my time. I also wouldn’t mind being the tree that houses squirrels and has fire flies dancing around it at night. I like a good party, what can I say.
What about you? What kind of tree do you want to be?