Our 11 year old son, complaining about having to wash a used zip-lock bag said, “why are you trying to save money by reusing these?” I said, “They are cheap. We can afford to throw them away, but the world can’t afford it… the landfills are full of plastic bags”. He replied “yeah, like one family in seven billion is going to make a difference.” I was left thinking for a while. I had to admit he had a point and that I was not quite sure how it would make a difference. I gave him the example of the Christmas party for the low income schools that had come to the Center the day prior. I said, see how quickly they learned to separate the trash, garbage and recyclables? Now they take that home and some will continue it and pass it on to others… He quickly observed nobody is watching us recycle the bags.
Today, my husband who normally waters the thousands of baby trees in the nursery is gone, so armed with my boots and the hose I started the task. I went reading the names to learn them… and had the luxury of having time to think (about zip-lock bags and other things) and watch darkness slowly take over the day. I came to one with a very pretty arrangement of leaves on its tiny limbs and looked at the name: Ceiba. I immediately felt humble. I absolutely ADORE Ceiba trees… they are majestic! And here I was, God or the Universal Intelligence, whichever you call it, had trusted little insignificant ME, to take care of so many of these majestic sentient beings: Ceibas, Guanacastes, Espaveles, etc. I felt intense joy, love and thankfulness.
Out there in the darkness that came toward the end of the task and amidst these tiny trees, there came a knowing and a certainty that our recycling plastic bags changed something in the collective consciousness… and that somehow, no longer mattering how, what one family does when nobody is watching makes a difference after all.
Dec 12 2014 at the CDS