There once was a tree that was called the listening tree. It lived in a picturesque forest with blue and purple flowers growing at its base. People would climb this tree in the beautiful forest. They would sit on the many limbs of the tree and told the tree all their problems. For years and years the tree grew and people climbed the tree to talk with it. They left all their issues with the tree and some way or another the issues and problems left with the tree would get solved.
As more and more people talked to the tree and more and more problems were solved, more people heard and came. Soon people were traveling from far away to talk to this tree. By the time this time the tree was the largest tree most has ever seen. It appeared to the people who lived closest to the tree that the more people came to the tree the larger it became.
Every day for years and years every limb was covered with people chattering about their woes. Then one day only one came. It was a little girl with tears in her eyes. She could not even reach the first branch to climb up on the tree, so she sat down by the flowers and told the tree, “I know I’m not special and I know that everyone else’s issues are more important. I’m just a little girl, but I’m all alone and no one even notices me. I would like some one to at least greet me.”
As she finished her request a little door opened and out walked a tiny old woman with wings who flew up to be near the little girl’s face.
Astonished the little girl asked, “Who are you?”
“I am the mother of this tree, every limb has one of my children listening to your people. No one has even talked to me in many years, so I know how you feel.”
The little girl smiled. “Thank you for letting me see you and thank you for noticing me.”
“My dear girl, being noticed is not your issue. What breaks your heart is that you are alone. I can see it in your eyes. Come live with us and you will never be alone.”
“I can not live in a tree or in the forest.”
The mother laughed and told her, “We are magical. I will shrink you down and give you wings. That is when you can choose to either be a listener with me or a giver with my husband.”
“What is a giver?”
Smiling the mother told the child, “A giver is one who gives the people what they need to mend their hearts or fix their problems.” She saw the confusion in the girl’s eyes and told her, with a sweet voice, “We do not fix other’s problems for them, we only open their eyes and give them the tools.”
“Are the givers ever alone?”
“When they are out helping others they may be.”
“I think I would like to stay with you then and be a listener.”
“As you wish,” The mother said and with a kiss on the girl’s head the girl was turned into a tiny winged version of herself.
This was a quick short story that I wrote at my day job when the internet was down.
And just as a reminder I will be on vacation starting Thursday.