Dear Trees,

Please stop trying to kill me.  I’ve wracked the depths of my brain and I honestly can not come up with a reason as to why you wish me harm.  I trim your limbs when they turn brown, I leave you to let cardinals and finches nest in your branches, I even give you water on hot dry summer days.  So why the hate trees?

Every year we go through this.  This itchy throat, watery eyes, sneezing, coughing, even headaches (dammit now I sound like a Pfizer commercial). How do you even have the ability to knock us down like this?  What evolutionary benefit could this possibly serve? To add insult to injury I was feeling awesome before you put your demonic plan in action. The sun was out after weeks of rain, it was finally getting warmer, life was good trees, it was good.  I even got in a workout routine again, thinking maybe just maybe I would be little more in shape when pool season came around. Then the symptoms started to set in, my head started pounding and I was tired, just so damn tired. Not even coffee can save me from the hell that is this suffering.

I mean I understand, reproduction and all.  Hey baby look at my stigma, I know you want it.  Hint hint nudge nudge. Why must I get involved in this though?  Wait, are you just super into the group voyeurism thing? Ugh, now I’m just disgusted.  I want no part of this, you do not have consent! I feel very used right now.

Maybe you’re just bored.  I mean it can’t be exciting never seeing anything but the field or woods you grew in.  Were you watching me on the running trails jealous and plotting. What, are you stuck at the development of a 12 year old boy?  Like, he he he, hey tree friend you wanna fuck with her? I know! What can we throw at her? I’m sorry you can’t move around but I DIDN’T MAKE YOU THAT WAY!  Why must you punish me for your misfortune?

You and I aren’t cool anymore trees.  I’ve been left wondering if M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Happening” was actually a prophecy and not fiction at all.  Crap does that mean water adverse aliens are headed our way too? Can they also be susceptible to tree attacks? That might at least buy us some time, slow them down, probably.  I am left to consider how many death by tree attacks are documented in the US each year. I can only imagine the number is staggering. It’s a national epidemic people.

You’ve won this round trees.  I’m going to sit inside and look out the window longingly, plotting my revenge.  Where’s my Claritin?



It’s sticky today.  One of those early spring days in the south where the chill has left the air and the thick atmosphere of summer is beginning to creep back up on us.  When I threw my phone across the room turned off my alarm clock this morning the humidity hit me, lingering even in the house despite the air running all night.  It made me question my decision to wear a sweatshirt to bed. However after dealing with a burst water filter in the kitchen at midnight I didn’t put much thought into my ensemble, I just climbed back into the comforting cocoon under the duvet and six hours of sleep.  

Even after tossing aside the old college sweatshirt, with the little bleach stain I like to ignore, I found little relief.  Hoping to be hit with a rush of cool air when I opened the door to let the dog out I was disappointed to find no reprieve. I stood in the doorway letting even more of the thick air in around me.  I itched to run over to the thermostat and turn it down to a degree that will make my husband complain and my son turn it back up, because after all he is his father’s son. No light should be left on, not thermostat set to a fully comfortable level.  Fine I will sit in the hot dark living room drinking coffee while I sweat. First world problems, I know.

I suck up my growing moist discomfort and wait for the dog who is getting old and slow.  She takes her sweet time sniffing the air and strolling the yard knowing she won’t have the opportunity to get outside again at least for a few hours.  I end up leaving the backdoor cracked for her, I can’t actually close it to preserve the cool inside because she won’t make a sound to be let back in. We trained her too well.  So well that two years ago after getting locked out for half an hour and patiently sitting by the back window waiting for us to notice and let her back in she cut her loses. Figuring we had forgotten her for good she took off to find a new home.  She knew she was going to die from hunger soon, despite having been fed an hour earlier. Understanding her very dire situation it made sense that she was found a few houses down in the neighbors garage helping herself to the bowl of food they had just put out for their dog.  I kind of love the old fart.

I feed groggy children and warn them it’s going to be warm and humid today, so of course they all come back downstairs in jeans and two of them in long sleeves.  I’m glad I say words to them. They clearly appreciate my attempts to ensure their comfort. Oh well. I still end up considering looking up a recipe to make them cookies using the giant costco jar of nutella my husband came home with a few weeks ago.  It’s Friday after all, cookies on the table after school is an acceptable luxury. Plus I don’t have to actually sign in to any job today, I have the time for such indulgences. Eventually I’ll reach my word limit for the day and need to take a break from writing.  Baking is a good activity for that.

Middle kid tells me that today she has a field trip to tour the middle school she is headed to in August.  Older kid is already at said school. I separately tell them to try and embarrass the other one if they see each other.  This might be purely for my own amusement, I hope they do it, because that would be fucking funny.

Water is falling from the sky off and on but not in steady streams.  Soon we’ll be back to the rolling thunderstorms of summer that cool off the afternoons making the choice to have settled here bearable in July and August, but right now its tornado season.  We don’t get tornados too bad here but we were on a watch yesterday evening. It was the main topic of discussion at older kids tech rehearsal for this weekend’s show. I remember again she has dress rehearsal tonight.  Mental note, five thirty at the theater, traffic was bad yesterday leave early. Heavy rain is suddenly pounding on the ceiling, but I hear it first on the chimney flute. Now I wonder if I remembered to shut it after the last winter fire we set.  I tell myself I’ll check later, but I probably won’t.

The rain makes people completely incapable of driving but it at least washes the pollen out of the air.  The pine tree pods haven’t opened yet but we’re probably only a week or two away from that, then the whole city will turn yellow.  We suffer under the haze of tree reproduction until more heavy rain comes through, on another sticky day, and washes it down the street.  We are able to watch cheering while it disappears down storm drains.

I wait in the drop off line at the middle school reminding older kid to embarrass middle kid even giving her examples, a how to guide, that she half heartedly chuckles at.  She’s not going to do it. She’s a dork. I realize that I’m either going to produce a totally traumatized adult or a hilarious one. If she ends up being a functioning part of society I guess I’ll consider my child rearing a success either way.  I only offered to drive her today because I have to drop the ageing dog off at the vet this morning and her stop is on my way. Judging by the line at the middle school a lot of the other parents are pretty sure their precious babies are going to melt if the ominous sky water touches them while they wait at the bus stop.  I fear for the future of my offspring’s generation. Older kid side eyes someone dressed in the school mascot outfit holding up a sign for some student election coming up. She’s not impressed. I feel for the unlucky kid in the stupid costume, this isn’t a day for outside mascots. The school could have been sympathetic and at least let the poor kid stand inside the front entrance.   A perfect example of the exceptional problem solving of our public education system hard at work here folks. I muse on the fact that my kids are going to arrive home sweaty faced and frizzy haired while I make my way to the vet in shorts and a t-shirt, still sticky. At least they’ll have cookies.