What does the WILLOW TREE represent?

18 Mar 2013

What does the WILLOW TREE represent?

Resiliency:  Parenthood can be a storm – one minute things are calm and you feel like you have it together. In the next moment, you find yourself on the edge of losing it.  There are no guarantees in life, and we all have our own set of struggles that we are meant to overcome.  If we are rigid and stiff with our expectations and reactions to life’s storms, then we will find ourselves easily broken.  But if we are flexible and learn to sway with the winds, we will return to our center once the storm has passed.  The Willow Tree Family Center is here to help each of us weather life’s storms.  “Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo or willow survives by bending in the wind.” –Bruce Lee

Health:  Wellness, both emotionally and physically, is essential to helping us weather these storms of parenthood.  What we do in pregnancy and how we raise our children sets the foundation for the wellness they have later in life.  The medicinal properties of the willow tree have been written about from the time of Hippocrates.  The leaves and bark of the willow tree have been used to reduce pain and fever, and it is from the bark of the willow that Aspirin was created.  Even more interesting, the willow takes personally responsibility for its own care, a trait that is highly encouraged in our Family Center.  When attacked by certain pests, the willow tree produces a certain chemical that actually changes the nutritional make up of its leaves and makes them difficult to digest. 

Community: Even more amazing then being able to change its chemical make-up, the willow tree communicates with its neighboring trees to warn them of harm when they are being attacked by pests.  They emit pheromones that cause neighboring trees to start changing the chemical make-up of their own leaves in order to protect themselves from the potential threat.  The Willow Tree Family Center works in the same way to educate, support, and strengthen each of us in our community.  We are here to share our struggles and storms with one another and find reliable information in order to make decisions about whatever we may face.      

Sanctuary:  The theme that is common in poetry, artwork, and even memories is that the willow tree is a safe haven; a sanctuary.  Beneath its branches, the willow provides peace, serenity, and compassion.  Whether or not you are currently facing one of life’s storms, you will find this peace, serenity, and compassion within the doors of our Family Center.