“For the gifts that are priceless are the ones that are heartfelt; their roots are within our soul. They are the greatest gift of all.” –Ellen J. Barrier

I watched a movie called, The Odd Life of Timothy Green. It’s interesting how movies seen at different times of our life can bring about different reactions. I experienced it through the eyes of the deep grief I was in the first time I watched it, and my heart was touched in beautiful ways. I had opportunity to watch it again recently and it touched me in a completely different, beautiful way.

Timothy Green was a gift; a vision that two loving people (who desperately wanted a child and could not conceive) created from their hearts. Upon hearing the doctor’s diagnosis after multiple attempts the couple decided to, “let go”. To allow some anger and grief to pass through them, they decided to create the vision of what their child would have been like. They wrote on paper, put the pieces into a small wooden box, and buried it in their garden. A torrential storm ensued, the box was shattered and Timothy came to be. He appeared covered in dirt as his first clothing and said he was eight years old. As if it was not mysterious enough, Timothy had leaves on his legs below the knees.

I resonated with Timothy for several reasons, one being his love for nature. And, there was something he did that I also do— and many would find weird. “And, it’s okay to be different. A little weird even!”(A line from the movie).

Can you relate to being odd or weird at times? I sure can. Coming from the often dreary Midwest weather, it was such a treat if I was on a walk and the sun would pop out from behind a cloud. I would stop, put my arms up toward the sky, close my eyes, and allow myself to feel the sun on my skin. It felt like love and such a warm hug to me. This is something in the movie that Timothy did as well. It made me smile so big seeing the enjoyment he had from the same experience I had. A friend of Timothy inquired about his experience and he said to her, “First, find the light, just absorb it. Then soak it in—think tree.” I loved this on so many levels!

In our unique healing recovery journeys: How do we each find our light? What brings you joy? What brings out your curious, creative, weird kid inside? What loving experiences do you have with something greater than yourself? When we encounter light bringing experiences, isn’t it wonderful to absorb and soak them in!

I also loved that he said, “think tree.” That made me laugh with joy because I have long felt that the attributes of trees have so much to teach us.

Spoiler alert: Without giving too much away (because the movie is certainly worth watching), Timothy’s leaves were connected to his odd life and his gifts. Timothy’s gifts were truly precious and priceless. Everything this boy did was heartfelt. Not only did he have roots to the earth, but through his very soul!

Timothy quietly displayed his gifts in every day life in so many pure, simple ways. His whole life was odd, and he was perceived as “weird”; yet, his heart was magnificent, he freely shared his gifts, and made incredible impact on all those around him.

In your life right now, only you have your gifts to give. You have your own ways of “finding the light.” No one, except you, can display your gifts in their uniqueness. It’s not only OK to be different, but we’re made to be different—“a little weird even!” Let your light shine, share your incredible odd life—who knows how many others will be graciously impacted. Offer your gifts freely and “think tree!”

Cheri Thomas

Cheri works as a Peer Support Specialist for RI in Arizona. She has experienced loss and grief which has led her to write for the masses to bring voice to those in similar situations. Cheri possesses a deep passion to share with, encourage, and inspire others on what she calls the Journey of the Heart.