A Tree of Life

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“I love that tree,” I said to La Chica when I dropped her off at before-care at the school. There’s this one tree off in the distance that turns a brilliant red orange every fall well before the other trees, and much more brilliantly. Seeing that tree every year makes my soul smile, I don’t know why. So I pointed it out to La Chica.

“Why does the tree bother doing that, when no one notices it?” she asked. “No one ever notices it. So why does it bother turning such pretty colors if no one cares?”

Oh sweet pea, because that’s what trees do. They turn wondrous colors every fall, without fail. It’s just part of what they do, it’s part of what makes them trees. Some years they aren’t as bright, or may drop leaves sooner or later due to weather and other external circumstances. But they all change colors and drop their leaves every year. Because they’re trees.

They don’t do this because people are watching. They don’t do this for anyone. They do it because it’s what they are. And sure, a lot of trees go unnoticed. Until one day, someone looks up and his breath is taken away. Keep doing your thing, and one day, someone will notice and you will take his breath away.

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