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Hello.

I am a rock 🪨.

I am heavy and grey and I don’t move much unless someone chucks me into a river. Then, sometimes, I can skip. But I can never be a tree. That’s just not how I’m built. I’m okay with that.

Hello.

I am a tree 🌳.

I am tall and strong. I source energy from the earth and the sun. I don’ t move much either. Unless there’s wind. Then, sometimes, I can dance. But I can never be a rock. That’s just not how I’m built. I’m okay with that.

There are people in your life, right this very moment, who are perfectly content to be rocks 🪨. Heavy and grey and still. There are other people in your life, right at this very moment, who are perfectly content to be trees 🌳. Resourceful and bendy.

They each have their strengths and they each have their limitations.

Even though I would never expect a rock to (POOF! 💥) turn into a tree or vice versa, this is what I sometimes expect of the people in my life.

Take my Dad for example. He rarely remembers a birthday unless reminded. It’s all very rock like 🪨. And yet for years I would get angry at having to remind him to write a card for one of my kids.

Eventually I just accepted that, for whatever reason, it’s not his skillset and though I would like for it to be his skillset, I’m not going keep investing mental energy trying to make sense of it and just let him be what he’s going to be… a person who rarely sends a card without me reminding him to do so 🤷‍♀️.

Put another way, “choose your battles.”

Put another way, God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change…

Put another way, sometime we try to control people to avoid facing reality because reality is disappointing and we don’t want to be disappointed 💥.

Here’s the reality that, for years, I didn’t want to face and so I went on being mad at Dad for not being more of a tree: My Dad is a shitty stand-in for my mom who died sixteen years ago and who would have been THE BEST grandma. She would have sent ALL THE CARDS on time, with gifts and goodies and surprises and I would have NEVER have had to remind her.

But Mom is no longer around in that way and Dad is not Mom and that is just, well, sad.

Here’s the thing though…

Sometimes the human experience is sad, or lonely, or disappointing… Sometimes the human experience is fun and exciting and magical too.

It’s a mixed bag of rocks and trees (I’m not convinced this metaphor is still working but go with me anyway).

It’s funny how we humans try soooooooooo hard to control the uncontrollable, all to avoid feeling certain feelings.

Instead of feeling sad about my Mom not being around to love on my kids, for years I expected Dad to all of a sudden become Mom-like and when he didn’t, my anger grew bigger and bigger at every passing birthday.

Until I figured out that the key is to just cry. A lot.

So I cried a lot. I let myself feel sad and disappointed and angry and then sad some more.

And then I just let Dad be Dad who doesn’t remember birthdays unless I remind him (and then he is happy to send out a card and some cash like a good rock) and who has other good qualities like telling jokes that my son and being charming and driving down for little league tournaments.

So there you have it. Rocks and Trees.

Are you expecting a rock to be a tree all to avoid a feeling?