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Pruning

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Tending the Creative Tree

Sunset in the Woods Out Back

Sunset in the Woods Out Back

You need to prune often especially after you have gone through a significant experience. … The whole object of pruning is that improves your growth, it regenerates your brain, and it opens up new opportunities. Experiences that are no longer being used in a positive manner should be cut from the creative tree inside of you and taken away. Gregge Tiffen (Lessons in Living: Give Nothing, Get Nothing)

Pruning is an apt description for how I’m feeling now in the wake of Luke’s passing four weeks ago. It also describes what I feel guided to do and how I want to be in this cycle of creating life anew.

Although I experienced a gigantic wave of grief and tears earlier this week, the sadness is waning. A sense of new growth and new possibilities lies beneath the surface. While not quite ready to burst forth, the creative tree has my attention and, as Luke often did, guides me to the care that it needs, IF I dare listen.

Pruning heads the list. My personal drumbeat is ‘marching’ me inward to identify and prune habits of mind, body and spirit that no longer serve my highest good.   In another verse that same beat calls me to look beyond my energetic body to the ‘stuff’ in my environment and to examine what is meaningful and useful to maintain. It is a time to cull, inside and out, preparing the field, my field, for what is to come.

When a cycle ends space is created. Often we rush to fill that space, especially when a cycle’s end is the passing of a loved one (human or of the furry kind). Several people have inquired if I have a new dog yet? No. I’m finding value sitting with the emptiness, even when it hurts like hell. Others want to know what I’m ‘doing’ and/or going to do? Not much that’s visible (at least for now); I’m allowing time to ‘be’ with no pressure to ‘do’. ‘Doing’ self-care and the tasks required prepare for winter in the woods is enough.

In the spaciousness of no pressure, insights come to guide me in tending my creative tree. I’m reminded that speed is not the issue; learning is.  After all, the pines in the woods out back have been growing for hundreds of years. They remind me to operate at my pace, on my frequency, just as they do.

At my pace I walk in peace, with loving gratitude for my life here in the mountains. On my walk this morning, I found several (okay 13, to be precise) heart rocks. I’ve found a few almost every walk these past four weeks. I recalled someone recently sharing that they never found heart-shaped rocks, and while we were talking, I reached down and picked one up on her driveway.

As I walked through the woods toward the labyrinth, I thought about the differences in how (from my perspective) that person and I approach life. I didn’t realize until that moment that these days I’m not looking for heart rocks on my walks, I’m looking AT love and loving all the beauty of my surroundings.  The heart-shaped rocks reveal themselves.

That’s not always been the case. In the past, I along with others, like the person I was talking with, looked for heart-shaped rocks much as we may look for love, abundance, success – without recognizing that we are swimming in the midst of all that and so much more.

From that experience and insight, I’m inspired to prune more. What habits of thought is it time to retire? What ‘stuff’ in the garage (and a few other places around the house) needs to be re-homed?  

“Inward, outward, forward march!” The creative tree needs pruning to burst into bloom.

Heart Rocks on the Trail

Heart Rocks on the Trail

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