Marion Pellicano Ambrose
I peer out my front window through the whisper of frost as the first honey colored rays
of sun peek over the horizon. The lawn is a Florida winter carpet of brown scattered with
green, and squirrels dart happily in and out of the branches of the small red maple my
husband and I planted in the yard. I take a closer look at this little tree. The spot where
it sits was inhabited by several holly and water oaks before it. For some reason, none of
them survived. My husband fertilized, sprayed, watered and coaxed but each one became
a brittle brown twig after the first winter.
I notice that the brave little maple is covered in tiny pink shoots that will grow
into glorious red leaves that will not only shade the house, but will be home to birds,
playground for squirrels, and the gentle sound of wind rustling them will ease my soul
and calm my spirit.
It occurs to me that people are a lot like these trees. Some people, if planted in
a certain spot, become brittle and dark. No matter how much they are nurtured,
encouraged, and loved, they just can’t root themselves and flower. We spend so many
hours in our efforts to change them and coax them to bloom, that we ourselves begin to
wilt and fade.
Others, no matter how hard the ground or lacking in minerals it is, flourish and bloom
with great abandon. They thrive on any encouragement or support, but are well able to
grow and be productive even without it. These people are the givers, the bearers of fruit
for all. They refuse to let circumstances thwart them and they make our world a brighter,
more beautiful place.
I’ve decided to be a little red maple! I choose to ignore the obstacles and the
circumstances in my life that will keep me from growing to my full height and depth! I
want to be the comforting shade for my friends, the safe haven for my family, and the
reflection of beauty that comes from” blooming where you are planted”!