He ran as fast as he could. No one was chasing him. He was running away but he had no idea where he was supposed to go. He was confused and shocked about what happened. He’s only a kid and he couldn’t understand what he felt. His heart was so heavy, his eyes brimming with tears.
A few minutes ago he was full of excitement about what he just heard. His buddy told him that they can go to their house and play there. He’s been there a few times and he was thrilled about how fun it would be.
“Wait here while I get the toys,” his playmate said. He was standing inside a little room, his eyes fixed on one of the photo frames on the wall.
“Who are you?” The voice was loud and furious.
Then he saw a big man giving him an angry look. “What are you doing here?
It seemed that the man didn’t recognize who he was. The boy was about to tell him that he was the son of his neighbor. But he froze in fear.
He couldn’t find his playmate to rescue him and tell that man that he was a friend and he was just there to play.
I ran as fast as I could. I was confused.
It took me a long time to understand that feeling. It was the feeling of being rejected.
And it hurts.
Over the years I learned that everyone goes through rejection in one way or another. No one is spared and it is an experience that sometimes pushes us to question our worth. It’s funny how people whom we care so much could make us feel rejected even if they say we are important to them. And the closer we are towards those people, the painful it gets.
How do we deal with rejection?
What I wanted to share in this post are the lessons I learned from the trees during winter. The naked branch on the photo is what you commonly see when the leaves fall off as the climate gets colder. These trees appear so alive with thick foliage in summer. Winter comes and they look dead, their branches sticking out like arthritic fingers. They seemed abandoned and forsaken as if their leaves have given up on them. With the cold wind blowing in a gloomy atmosphere, these trees have all the reasons to hate the world.
But they don’t. What they are going through is not easy but they recognize that winter is inevitable and they can’t stop their leaves to desert them. They stand freezing and exposed as if they lost their dignity. Yet they know that they do not become less than a tree because they remind themselves that they will always remain trees even if their leaves have left them. They never give up because they believe winter shall pass and spring will follow. They may look dead but inside they are alive. They know that life comes from within. And from within they regenerate, unhurriedly growing little buds that transform into new leaves and flowers. Then they say to themselves that they are better trees after surviving the season of rejection.
Until this time I do not know why that man had to drive me away. What I am sure is that I have forgiven him.
Check my other photos under 101 CONTEMPLATIVE PHOTOGRAPHY PROJECT