Broken branches

I arrived at my parents farm last night to a huge branch broken from one of my apple trees. My Dad walked up as I was surveying the damage, “I don’t know if it was the wind, or just plain the weight of the apples. It’s just overloaded. I wish we could spread them out more from year to year so there wasn’t so much at once”. As a stood back and looked at her, buried under the weight of so many apples, I totally understood why she folded. Don’t we all have those moments when it’s just too much? When life simply hands us way more than what we should probably take on at one time, what do we do? Even when its good stuff, we need to remind ourselves when enough is enough. It’s easy to get caught up, and it can be really hard to draw the line. So often we just “take it on”, “get ‘er done”, “suck it up buttercup”, “that’s just the way it is”, “power on!”, “when ______ is over, I’ll take a break’, and then the next “apple” of life comes on, and we ignore the extra weight and carry on. Like trees, we need to prune our lives so that the best of us gets what it needs, and the extra stuff is clipped away. The risk we take in the constant need to be do it all, be it all, is that eventually, we break. My husband grabbed the saw, my Dad got the paint. We cut the branch away, painted the spot where it broke, and sent her all the love and understanding in the world. I get it, I think we all do. We all have that place where enough becomes too much, and often the line in between takes twists and turns and we don’t see it clearly. We want to believe we can just hang on and we’ll get through.
The truth is, sometimes, we just need to do a better job pruning.