This last weekend I went to the summer home of my childhood, a lovely lake in the southwestern corner of Montana, surround by beautiful Montana forests and just a few miles outside of the West Entrance to Yellowstone National Park. I hadn’t really experienced it in the Fall, so this experience was especially filled with wonder. The trees were gorgeous, many changing colors, some topped with a light layer of snow, and others pines looking just like they did in my childhood days.
I am not sure why I felt as I did while visiting this familiar place, but I was overwhelmed with love and gratitude for the individual trees, which together created the gorgeous forest where shadows of my childhood live. Each tree felt important to me, each one had a unique beauty. The ones that changed color with the seasons added splashes of red, yellow, and orange to a sea of greens and blues. The ones toward the tops of the mountains that were glazed with white reminded me of the beautiful season to come. And the pines that I so love had such great variety. The new ones were small and perfect. The older one tall with signs of disease, or imperfections.
This weekend I was in a place where a billion trees, standing strong in their own place, came together to create a beautiful forest. A forest that has enriched my life, a place where I feel closer to heaven and gratitude for this beautiful life.