I took this photo last week in California. I love the feeling of that tree, a lone living organism, there on a hillside, noticed or unnoticed, doing what it can to live and grow and absorb nourishment and stretch heavenward.
Its being could have been for naught but itself, but I captured this image on film, and now, forevermore, this one glimpse will be preserved. Our lives are sort of like this tree. We live, we grow, we learn, we die. And if we don’t capture and preserve something in words or in photos, it’s as if we never lived. It reminds me of this thought from Ron Barney from the Church History Department (22 Nov 2010 radio interview):
“If you do not write your story, your name will be obliterated from the human record and you will not speak from the grave. You will not have any influence on those who come after you. Those who write about the things they have done and learned in life have a huge impact on posterity. Write your story. You have overcome things your children need to know about.”
This is my FIVE HUNDRED AND FIRST blog entry. Imagine that! 501 thoughts captured. What if I had not started writing here? What a loss that might have been. It would be like this tree, living unnoticed. I am grateful to have this photo. I’ve already stared at it a long time. It intrigues me. I can tell life has not been easy for this tree. Its branches are gnarled and unsymmetrical, dipping low and reaching high–but achieving a balance of sorts. Like my life.
My thanks to AnnDee Ellis, my BYU Memoir Professor, who encouraged us to start a blog and write regularly. 500 parts of me have been preserved. I’m happy about that.