Monday, February 15, 2010

Leaf Blowers

Tyler Perry, my most favorite playwright, gave the most eloquent speech when I went to see Madea Goes to Jail a couple of years ago in Atlanta. As I am re-doing much of my life, getting back to me, I have been reminded of this most important lesson.

This is a terrible Jessi rendition of his speech on Trees. Pardon my lacking, but I believe you can find it on you tube if you look.

I compare the people in my life to parts of a tree. Most of the people in my life, in the world are like leaves. The wind blows they are over here, it blows again, they are over there, they are unstable. They are there to take from the tree and provide a little shade sometimes. They disappear with the changing of the seasons.

Don't get mad at the leaves, it's who they are. So much heartache is caused by people trying to make leaves permanent. So much time is spent wasted on trying to hold onto someone who was only supposed to be with you for a season. Let them go.

There are other people who are like a branch. They make you think they are a friend, that they are strong, but when you step out, they will break and leave you high and dry.

Now pay attention...If you can find you two or three people in your life like the roots at the bottom of the tree, you are blessed. Those people aren't going anywhere. A tree can have a hundred million branches and only a few roots to get what it needs. Without the roots the tree would die. You can cut the whole tree down and the roots will still be trying to send up nourishment and get the tree growing again. Roots are not seen and don't care to be seen. They are there for the tree, to keep the tree grounded, to give the tree what it needs to survive.

Many thanks to Tyler Perry for being so wise! You can find more info on him at

I'll skip past the leaves and branches, I"ve wasted enough time there already. I'm learning to take them for what they are. I've made the mistake of hanging onto leaves and branches. Ah... but each day I get a little smarter. You will be happy to know that most recently I purchased a leaf blower .

To the roots in my life, I am sincerely thankful. You have been such a blessing to me. The storms I have faced, only further showing me how very vital your presence is in my life. Tho the winds many times shredded my tree, you were there to make sure I wasn't lost forever, and for that I am grateful.


  1. Even though leaves are just passing through they can still be beautiful, beneficial (providing shade) and while not roots you can still learn something from them. Even if it's a lesson you don't want to learn (like "don't expect a leaf to act like a root in a storm").

    I like to think of leaves as "seasonal friends." Even if I only learn one thing from them it can actually change the course of my entire life. A kind word from a stranger, a poem from someone I don't even know IRL, a chance to look at something from someone else's perspective for just a little while.

    I agree that we shouldn't try to hang onto leaves and branches, and there are times when we need to grab that leaf blower, but even the "bad" leaves or branches (OK, I'm taking this metaphor too far!) the ones that leave scars that mark their passing... can have a positive impact on our lives. We can choose to hide these scars and rake away all leaves, or we can wear those scars with pride and leaf (bad pun sorry!) our heart open.

    I've always tended to protect the trunk and blow away all leaves. It's something I've worked hard to overcome because I beleaf (I can't stop myself!) that all trees need both roots and leaves to grow.

    Mary in TX


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