Mom loves the groves and groves of Aspen. Unlike the whistling pines, the Aspen leaves delicately rustle softly ringing. Even when the wind gusts, the leaves of the Aspen tree rapture with only a gentle trembling. In the fall, that true green succumbs to the most brilliant yellow gold. Truly, they fill the mountainsides with rapturing beauty.
Our lives mirror the Aspen. We suffer naturally; we suffer at the hands of others. We can turn that suffering into a protected scar, exposed to wind and rain and elements we cannot control, or we can rot from the inside out and never reach for the sunlight.
The largest living organism on the planet is an Aspen grove. The roots of each tree can spread several yards and when those roots feel the sunshine, sense the light, new shoots sprout out of the ground. The grove spans one hundred acres and its life, it's warmth, can be seen from space.
I spent some time on Taylor's Facebook today. I thought I had read everything - but I had missed so much. My exposed scar, the inside of me ached for the girl "who always knew how to love", "who always made others feel important", "who always listened" and "was always willing to be goofy", "who loved and lived with intention", and "who was my friend."
Like the Aspen, she kept sending out roots to look for light, to look for the warmth of sunshine. It's a theme that continued to play over and over again on her Facebook page.
It's July again; my heart is broken, still. I wanted to get to this day a year ago, but the messages surrounding the wreck, the hospital and the celebration of her life were too many.
Today was hard - the Aspen had a lesson to teach - and that was good.