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A Willow Tree


I’ll plant a weeping willow

For all the world to see

And when the wind blows through its branches

It will be whispering to me


I’ll plant a weeping willow

Not too far from the sea

And salt spray from the ocean waves

Will be carried back to me


I’ll plant a weeping willow

Beneath which I will sit

And when I look around my world

Everything will fit


I’ll plant a weeping willow

Beneath which I will sleep

For when I pass on from this world

My ashes will it keep.


Fear – Synonyms ~ Noun: dread – fright – apprehension – funk – alarm. Verb: be afraid – dread – apprehend – funk – be afraid of

I’m beginning to understand fear in a way that is different from what I usually associate fear with. For example fear of scary monsters, fear of dying, fear of a loved one dying. Fear of flying. Or that acid-taste-in-your-mouth fear you feel when you’re almost hit by a car. I’m also beginning to understand that it is holding me back, preventing me from growth. In fact, I feel I have become paralyzed with fear. What am I so afraid of? A lot of things, I’m discovering, but for now the foremost fear I have is change. Its weird because I’ve always liked to experience new things but now I feel paralyzed by this particular fear. It has overwhelmed me. That question which provokes uncertainty plagues me. “What if?” What if I sell this house I’ve lived in for 19 years? That would be a drastic change for sure, but would it be a good one? What if I’m horribly unhappy in my new living quarters? Once sold, I won’t be able to go back to this house. As crumbling around the edges as it is, it has been my haven, my security. Sometimes I feel as though my feet have somehow taken root in the heart of pine floors.

The giant tree in the back yard has sheltered me for almost 20 years, translating the wind into a voice I can hear and communicate with. My little, tiny side yard has been my oasis every summer and now, thanks to my husband, it also has a raised herb garden. Mint spills over the wooden side on one end and parsley and oregano occupy the other. It is so sheltered there that they all wintered over intact with no other protection or intervention. The house came with a fig tree that bursts with fruit twice a season which is amazing because I used to hack it down with the lawn mower every year until someone told me what it was. Poor forgiving fig tree. I planted a cherry tree which yields lucious tart cherries the neighbor kids can’t help but pick when they think I’m not looking. It is sad and droopy looking after a storm tried to demolish it but every summer the deep red fruit covers the tree. There is a mulberry tree on the other side of the house which planted itself. Since it was growing up against my fence and not knowing what it was I tried to pull it out…to no avail. The mulberry tree grew to adulthood quickly, producing hundreds of berries which are both wonderful and a pain in the tookus when the birds eat and “process” them.

This house, my home, is the only place my grandchildren have ever known me to live. I’ve lived here since the day they were born and two of them lived in it with me for a while. It is like their home too. A second home so to speak. My older sons may not be too attached to this shell because they were in their teens when we moved in so their stay here, in terms of years, was brief. The youngest son, though, was only six and grew up here. My two eleven-year-old cats, Shadow and Striper, were born here and my beloved Bear is buried in the back yard. I was not married when I bought it. I was a single mother just out of bankruptcy. I struggled mightily to possess it and hang on to it (most often by the skin of my teeth), a place no one could make me leave. A place to put a roof over my children’s heads once and for all (and mine too). Many people advised me not to, but I put in an above ground pool, something I wanted all my life and have cared for and enjoyed every single year since I did.

Major life events have happened while living here. I survived a heart attack. My Dad passed. Too many friends to count have passed. I lived through a total hip replacement. My Mom had two strokes. My oldest sons remodeled the downstairs bath as a gift. I owned and operated two businesses from here. I went back to college and became a licensed, Certified Massage Therapist. All three sons got married. All four of my granddaughters were born. I became an actress. I remarried after 20 years!

Now? Well now I contemplate selling it and moving on. Even after a year and a half of marriage the house still feels more mine than our’s and somehow that just doesn’t seem fair to my husband. I know I wouldn’t like it if the roles were reversed. He doesn’t feel the same deep connection to this nearly 100-year-old house that I do. He, too, wants something that is “his” and I don’t blame him. I also feel a deep need to move closer to my Mom, to be there for her. Selling the house would enable us to buy one with some land and maybe start a business together. These are all good reasons to sell. Good enough at least. I only know that when I think about it my chest tightens, tears well up in my eyes, and I get a lump in my throat that I just can’t seem to swallow.