After Hurricane Sandy ripped our home apart, I was so focused on righting the wreckage that I was blind to the quiet beauty blooming in our yard.
This morning, after yesterday’s rough day and night, I looked outside with the kind of clarity that only comes after you’ve worn yourself to mental exhaustion all night puzzling a problem.
There, right in front of me was a tree in full, white, puffy-bloomed glory.
I stood in stunned silence as I held our infant son.
How, I wondered, had I missed something so lovely and so present?
The realization was especially meaningful because, ever since we moved from our quaint (read: teeny) fixer upper to a bigger home in the burbs, I’d bemoaned the loss of two cherry blossom saplings I’d nurtured for years.
I saw those two trees, which we’d planted on either side of the picket fence entrance to our front yard, as beautiful sentinels preserving our idyllic peace against urban nuisances.
I missed their protective presence and looked longingly at them when we passed through our old hood.
I was dwelling in the past.
Here, in my present and my presence, was an even larger, stronger, and fuller tree standing as witness to our new lives.
I felt myself being pulled out of the night’s stupor. My baggage, my worries, all of it seemed to shrink as I stared at the truth looming before me.
I am responsible for crafting the day and drinking in the now in a way that is free of the taint of yesterday’s woes.
I too shall lift my branches up, soak in the sun and enjoy today’s calm blue skies.