O is for Oak: Pagan Blog Project 2013

Those of you who’ve been reading my blog for a while might remember my posts on sitting with the oak tree last year. The tree stood outside the trailer where I used to dry my herbs and make things for my (now mostly empty) Etsy shop.

During the troubles of last year, the oak tree was one of my greatest sources of comfort. I could lean against it’s trunk and feel supported and steadied.

I’ve really missed that tree since I left. Well, I’ve missed the entire garden, the entire weedy acre that I used to call home. Though I know it was time to move on, the loss of that space is still pretty hard to deal with sometimes. My garden, the trees on the land . . . they were an important relationship, and the relationship was severed suddenly and permanently. I’m still mourning.

But. There’s a beautiful oak tree right outside the door of my office building. It isn’t situation in such a way that I could comfortably sit with it. But I can step outside the door on breaks and lean against its trunk and listen to its leaves rustle. Though this oak isn’t as excited about my company as the one at my former home, it’s friendly. And it still radiates that steady, deeply rooted energy that I valued so much in my oak friend.

I was feeling sorry for myself, thinking of how busy my schedule has become now that I work outside the home full time, how I don’t have hours to spend communing with the trees. Then I read my old blog posts about visiting with oak. I was reminded that when I had the time, I filled it up with all kinds of being busy. And my time with the oak tree was usually fifteen minutes here and there–hardly hours of communing. Oak trees are pretty no nonsense. They let you know what you need to know without prettying it up.

I could still take the time to lean against a tree for 15 minutes every few days.

I could easily find a tree to lean against–Portland is a fantastic city for parks. And, being a city of tree huggers, no one would think I was doing anything odd.

Sometimes my problem is real. And sometimes my problem is me–and my crappy attitude. When it was time to leave, and I was fighting it, oak offered me comfort but never suggested that things would be all right if I changed my thinking. It confirmed that my troubles were real troubles. But I’m pretty sure the oak tree would laugh at me now, and tell me to spend less time watching Netflix.


One thought on “O is for Oak: Pagan Blog Project 2013

  1. I do something similar in my office breaks: I have to make just a brisk five minute’s walk from the industrial area to a little wood. It is jammed between two noisy freeways and probably the remains of a much bigger forest, but there are trees of different kinds and ages, and grass, bushes and shrubs, and flowers and lots of birds, bees, bumble bees, beetles, ants, butterflies. Sun and shade, puddles after rain, sand in my sandals… I ignore the freeways’ noise and listen to the rustle of the leaves. As my break is 30 minutes, I have 20 minutes there and I enjoy every second. It is only when the weather is very inconvenient that I don’t go there. It helps me to stay sane in the sometimes quite insane corporate world and I am happy to have it, even under such restricted conditions.

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