We moved a few months back (something I’ll share about in a different post) from being an easy three miles from the ocean to more into the mountains and among the redwoods – though only a mere minutes from one another it really did amaze me at how quickly the landscape changes in this area.
I’ve always been an ocean girl and I still consider myself one, but there has always been a special place in my heart with mountain ranges that held redwood trees. With the ocean I’ve always felt connected. Connected to myself. Connected to those far from me. Just all around connected…as it in fact connects our world. So, much to my surprise, I learned a very cool fact about redwood trees this year. With redwoods you won’t ever see them growing alone, because in order to survive they are a type of tree that needs to be grouped together…in a community so to speak. Even just a small grouping, they are trees that can’t survive alone. Beneath the surface they are all connected by their root system…surviving off of one another. What an incredible picture these massive giants paint, without each other and their resources they would not exist.
So it makes sense every time I get a chance to walk among these giants that I feel at peace and connected in an entirely different way.
My life reflects these redwoods a lot more these days. Having moved to Santa Cruz almost two years ago my “community of roots” greatly shrank, almost to the point that it felt like suffocation. To feel that alone (especially with a little one depending on you) is not something I would wish for anyone. And it is not that my community from my Southern California life wasn’t there for me, but I had been the one to break away, to “replant” so to speak, so of course they wouldn’t be there like they had been for me.
Slowly though over time I have begun to find my place and my new community has formed around where we have planted. It may not feel as vast and wide as the “oceans” I had before, but I think even parenthood changes a bit of that. My community is close, intertwined with the roots we’re putting down. There is a connection just like the redwoods…shared resources and a sense of surrounding that I haven’t ever quite felt before in my life.
Again, its not like this life of redwoods is better, it’s not really the comparison I am trying to make, because at the core of me I still love the ocean, but it’s a specific appreciation and love for the here and now. It’s different. An unexpected beautiful, difference.