A birch grew tall and arabesque in the corner of my front yard of my girlhood home. Through the decades, my birch tree followed me, no matter where I would find myself, signaling home, my place to be.
My birch tree became my buddy, shadowing me when I would need to leave yet another resting place. No matter where I found myself, a birch tree was always there.
As my college years came to an end, I wondered what was next for me. Graduation would mark the end of college life as I knew it, and the beginning of a new life and place to be. Sitting three floors up on the balcony of my apartment, I would look at the stars and wish upon them under a glowing moonlight while listening to the city noises. My observations were not limited to skies above and streets below; a rustling of leaves diverted my attention. In the corner of the balcony, slender tree limbs extended their reach over the deck. I walked closer to have a look. I recognized the leaves and the wispy branches and then followed the tree trunk and its peeling bark to down below. A birch tree!
I relied on my birch tree maybe because it was considered a symbol of strength, renewal and fertility in ancient times. Birches are hearty and elegant pioneers of new territory, one of the first to show new growth in spring after the bitter cold of winter. Had I, too, outgrown my space? It was time for me to move on, begin anew, and take residence elsewhere. My birch buddy told me so.
Debuting June 2018, “Under the Birch Tree” a memoir of discovering connections and finding home is about strength, renewal, and growth.