Until I read your article, I never noticed the theme in my life, my entire life, is trees.

When I had a difficult time at home listening to my dad abusing my mom, I aimed my little body out to the pine tree forest that was situated at the back of our house. Since I was so little, I'm not sure how big the 'forest' was but I know it soothed me without me being aware. I built forts out of all the fallen pine needles.

My mom moved us to Pennsylvania when I was about eight after she divorced my dad. We moved from house to house but I always recall walking in the trees whether we lived in a converted chicken coop in Coopersburg, or in a basement in a house on the Main Line (a very hoidy toidy area).

At the Main Line house, there was a giant pine tree in the very small backyard and I used to go outside to climb it. I recall making sure I would always make it to the top until the branches are rather bendy. It was not the safest place for me to be, but yet it was.

Becoming a teen, the parties in the woods were where I felt safest and most myself. I didn't really like the house parties. Don't get me wrong, I still went, but I always preferred the bonfires in the woods.

And when I moved to an area that doesn't have real trees (San Diego, CA), I never understood why I was so unhappy until I visited Pennsylvania on a whim for a high school friend's birthday party. It was the time before the party and after the party where I walked through so many areas full of trees: Valley Forge Park, Tyler Arboretum, Chanticleer Garden, Jenkins Arboretum, and others, that I finally understood I need (need) to be living under a canopy of trees.

After my husband moved out of our house in San Diego, I bought paintings of trees to hang on the walls (I only just now realized this--I must have been doing this unconsciously).

I'm currently writing this reply from an Airbnb in western Massachusetts where I hope to find a house and wander through the woods for the rest of my life. I'm at peace here.

On a separate note, your paintings are absolutely beautiful!

Far more interesting internally than externally. I write to quiet the voices. Deleted Facebook & Twitter thereby immediately quieting 1000’s of voices.