Reflections of Consumption: Trees and Leaves and Letting Go

October 30th

Today, I bought nothing. Instead, I was gifted with duck eggs. Four large beautiful eggs from two ducks whom my student is training to be therapy ducks. I have not met them in person, but I watched them grow over our Skype meetings in the spring. When I try these eggs this weekend, there will be feelings of gratitude and happiness. I don’t get that from store bought eggs. From those I get worry that even though we buy the organic, free range eggs, the chickens don’t have the same happy life that those my out-of-town friends have. Perhaps this is a signal to search out eggs from not only local sources (which I used to do more pre-Covid) but from somewhere with a personal connection.

It was a GOOD day. I spent it up at the Environment Centre, working with some of my favourite people. One of my student’s Mom’s came in to talk about photography. We are hoping to enter the SPARK photo festival again to bring our passion for the environment to the public and raise awareness of the other-than-human people that live in our amazing world. I feel so grateful to be part of this community where giving of time and talent happens like breathing.

Copyright Leigh Symonds
Copyright Leigh Symonds

We spent time throwing leaves, laughing snd running and planting trees. The trees will take decades to grow, but each student who planted a tree will have that connection to that special tree-being every time they come. Part of the course will focus on connecting to that tree, to caring for it as it gets its roots established and begins to grow. I am looking forward to that.

Copyright Leigh Symonds
Copyright Leigh Symonds

While I didn’t buy anything, I consumed happiness and connection with others and the world. This is what drives well-being! I think of the pressures that drive us to work so we can buy rather than make. I think of how the gift of a parent’s time has brought me into connection with her. I think of the gift of duck eggs. I want to give back. I think of Etzioni’s (2012) video. Relationships create happiness.

One of my co-workers mentioned a beautiful concept today: the autumn trees are letting go of their leaves. Equally, we need to be able to let go. I think about that through the day. I have let go of some things so that I can grow in others.


Etzioni, Amitai (September 2012). You don’t need to buy this. YouTube

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