I never knew we could love a tree so much. And certainly didn’t know we could develop such an emotional connection with our daughter via the soil below our feet. But in the last few months, we’ve been watching the trials and tribulations of one special (and tough!) magnolia in our back yard. And this afternoon, her first bloom brought us to tears.
The story goes back a few months when a storm knocked down a large cedar tree in the corner of our back yard. We wanted to replant something there, and it just so happened to be earlier this year when we started the adoption process. We quickly decided that the tree would be for “her”. We thought it would be cool for her to know it was planted for her, and for her to be able to watch it grow (as it, in turn, watched her grow). And what symbolism with us not only starting our family tree, but also planting our first tree. The significance goes on and on.
We chose a Little Gem Magnolia. In the first couple of weeks, we just loved staring out the kitchen window at this gorgeous 9-feet of god’s earth that joined our lawn. In adoption, you don’t have visible progress like a pregnancy. At times, you’re searching for evidence and connection to your child and the process at large. So in many ways, the magnolia *became* her. Sarah even surprised me one night after work with a picnic out next to her, so the three of us could eat together for the first time. Things were good.