Monday the electric company cut down our pear tree.
It was not just any pear tree.
My babies and my nieces and nephews all ate canned pears from that tree when they were too young to eat the fresh pears. It was our safe spot in case of fire or evacuation when we lived in the old farm house. Countless pears from that tree were given as gifts to friends and neighbors. For 6 six years, Peters’ Pears were delivered for Letter “P” Show-and-Share Day at Miss Kim’s daycare. That tree was the first place we let our kids go to “alone” after we built our new house. (It is just up the driveway, but far enough away to feel like freedom.) When my children came home after a stressful day at school, I would often let them take a break to pick pears and de-stress as they ate the fresh fruit and walked the distance to and from that fruit-filled tree. Watching deer eat the fallen pears was always a fun pastime.
The only downfall to that tree was it stood 13 feet from the power line and the required distance was 15 feet. Even though it has never grown (and probably would never grow) tall enough to touch the lines, those two feet cost us our tree.I cannot be angry with the tree-trimming company. They were just doing their job. The men working explained in a very calm and professional manner that they could not make exceptions for us that they hadn’t made for others. The gentleman who spoke to my crying children and me shared that it was necessary to clear from ground to sky anything within 15 feet of the lines. Their job was to ensure power to all their customers. My job now was to explain to my children that sometimes the answer to our toughest questions is “No.”
Just as the electric company has to work to ensure service for all its customers, I have to ensure that my children understand that rejection is part of life. There are too many individuals today who have not learned to cope with rejection or the word “No.” They think “No” is the end of all options. They fail to understand that “No” can be a chance to grow and move in a new direction.
We can’t always keep the pear trees in our lives.
Letting go of things is often for the betterment of others. We have to think beyond ourselves and our wants. Sometimes the answer is “No.”
To combat their blues, I have devised a science experiment for my children. We salvaged a half dozen or so of the fallen pears and are planting their seeds in a variety of ways. I don’t know that any of our methods will work, but at least my kiddos will see that there is always hope and other options. We have planted a whole pear, a half pear (with seeds still in tact), and some seeds straight from the pear. We are also drying a half dozen or so seeds to plant in the spring. After Googling, “How to grow a pear tree from seeds,” we have also begun a seeds in water process for determining viable seeds and prepping them to grow into new trees. (Future blog post promise here!)
The missing tree will always leave a hole in our hearts and the backyard, but also provides us with lessons for coping and moving on. I am not gonna lie, those pears were one of my favorite fall treats, but now I have the trees my kids and I will grow together to harvest from in the future.
If you find yourself in a situation where “No” is the answer, look at it as an opportunity to hone your coping skills and discover new opportunities. Don’t get hung up on what the “No” didn’t do for you. Grab onto what the “No” has provided. With positive energy and renewed intent, you can turn any “No” situation into an Intentergy opportunity.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. Dear Mr. Tree Cutter Guy, sorry my kids were crying and made you feel bad. We just really liked that tree. No hard feelings.
P.P.S. If anyone has pears next fall, I know some kids who would be happy to pick a few for you. 🙂