Saturday, May 23, 2009

My Cherry Tree

There's a tree in my front yard, that is so amazingly beautiful, I think I would have bought my house based on that tree alone. I've been waiting and waiting for this tree to finally bloom, spring has come to all the rest but our tree has been holding out. But in the last few days, it finally has come to life and its amazing. At this moment, as I type, I keep looking over my shoulder out the window to admire the cloud of deep pink flowers it has become. It smells great too, the breeze keeps carrying in wafts of its gorgeous flowery smell to me, I love this tree, a lot. But, its a cherry tree, and like all cherry trees, this period of incredibly beauty is very brief. Soon, the flowers will wilt and the petals will fall to the ground and the for the rest of the year my amazing tree is just a tree, with dark leaves and kinky, winding branches. It buds, it flowers, it becomes captivating and beautiful, then its beauty fades away. Such is life right? Precisely.

My cherry tree inspired me when it came time to get a tattoo to memorialize Everett. We had felt very strongly that getting tattoos for him was something we needed to do, to make him present always, and to keep him and his precious little life always in the front of our memories. But, how would we personalize these tattoos, to make them really relevant and convey just how much Everett touched us, and who he was. We decided on getting his foot prints, and as I designed my tattoo, I chose have his feet being showered in falling cherry blossoms. Very fitting I think. Cherry blossoms remind us of the fragility and transience of life. Everett's life is a perfect example of this. He was born, he was beautiful and breath taking and then he was gone. His life was like a cherry blossom, amazing, awe inspiring, and painfully short.

Here's my tattoo, little life sized feet, and gently falling cherry blossoms and petals. Picture them falling from the tree to the ground, their brief time to shine is over, but everyone always remembers how beautiful cherry blossoms are. People are drawn to them, they visit orchards filled with flowering cherry trees, artists paint them, photographers take pictures of them, tattoo artists have tattooed many with their small and lovely flowers. It would appear that cherry blossoms are universally beautiful and widely loved. So, I don't mind likening my baby to them one bit.

Here are some pictures I took of my tree yesterday. I took dozens, up close, far away, any way you look at it, they're just plain beautiful. I may frame one or two of these to hang on a wall. Maybe they'll keep us mindful that life is short and sweet, its beautiful while we have it, but soon enough, its gone (like anyone living in MY house needs reminding of how fleeting life is).

Also, maybe they can remind us of something else, about seasons of life. Sure, cherry blossoms wilt and die and fall to the ground, the tree becomes plain and average, and in the winter its darn right ugly with sharp black branches in awkward angles, but, spring comes again. After the harsh winter passes, spring brings buds back to this tree, and before we know it, its full of amazing blooms, thick and clustered and plentiful. Just like my gorgeous cherry tree, life has seasons of ugly and average, of discontent and pain, but, sure enough, spring comes again and beauty fills our lives, happiness, joy and contentment come back around. Life cycles through these seasons over and over, some are longer then others, some shorter, but we can always rest assured that winters of grief and discontent will be replaced with springtimes full of blessings and joy, we just need to be patient and wait.


1 comment:

  1. This is a beautiful tribute to your son. I also have a tattoo for my son that passed the same day he was born. I am sorry for your loss and am touched by your decision to memorialize him in the way that you did.