You Are Not A Tree

You are not a tree... If you don't like where you are, move

The first year after my guy came out of hospital things we REALLY tough.

Along with not being able to walk anymore he was also in so. much. pain. every. single. day. - and that was on top of a whole bunch of other pretty shitty stuff he was already dealing with (that’s not mine to share).

I guess it was the naivety of not knowing, of not having been in such a situation before, that I didn’t realise just how much would end up falling on my shoulders.

Every day I felt tired, more tired than I have ever felt in my whole entire life - the lack of sleep, the stress, the constant anxiety and the amount I had to now do for both of us - it was all too much.

That year I cried and I cried and I cried.

I wanted so badly for someone to just come and rescue me because I felt trapped in the situation I now found myself in and had no clue what do do.

You see I loved my guy, so as tired as I was and as much as it was putting a strain on every cell and fibre in my body - I couldn’t leave. I couldn't see him deal with all this on his own.

I mean I thought about it...

‘Can I really do this?’

‘Do I want to do this?’

‘I know I don’t want this to be my life yet I don’t see a way out…’

However my answers always came back the same…

Whether I could or whether I couldn’t, whether I decided to stay long term or whether I didn’t, I just wanted more than anything to know he was ok - that he'd be ok - first. 

I didn’t want to leave him knowing what he was going through - I needed (for me and for him) to see that part through.

After that? Who knew, it would be figured out then…

I remember around this point I heard a saying I’ve heard many times before:

‘You are not a tree. If you don’t like where you are, you can move’.

It was something I forgot in the craziness of it all but I needed to hear so badly in that moment - that I had a choice.

I’d spent that year feeling trapped, like I was struggling to breathe and survive each day because I felt like I had no choice - but I did. It was my CHOICE to stay and see things through, yet I could also choose at anytime to leave if I wanted.

It didn’t change my actions or how much I was there for him through that insanely pain filled year, but knowing again I had the choice... I suddenly felt free and that feeling was everything.


While my guy now still has pain he deals with daily, it’s nothing like it was that first year.

Sometimes taking yourself out of a situation is the right thing to do, and sometimes just knowing you have the choice to anytime you want gets you through.

The thing I want you to know (if case you ever forget too), is that you ALWAYS have a choice.

If you don’t like your job, you can leave anytime you want and get a new one.

If you don’t like the work you’re doing, you can change it and do something different.

If you don’t like where you live, you can move.

If you’re unhappy in your relationship, you can say goodbye.

You can choose to do anything you want, anytime you want, because you are not a tree.

Ruth Ridgeway

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