Undefining Moments

Under the Tree

She laid beside him. The sun shone through the canopy of trees that provided shelter from the outside world. She felt warm and safe in his arms. As they read the words from the colorfully illustrated book, she felt his finger begin to trace the curves of her face and body. His touch moved slowly across her abdomen and down beneath her panty line, she was overwhelmed with emotion. Her tummy tingled. She loved this boy, her brother. Naive, but wise for her young age of four, she pulled herself up and ran for safety into her mother’s arms.

“Momma! Momma! Brother did something, Momma!” she gasped as she ran into her mom’s embrace.

“Now now,” Mother said. “Don’t be silly. What is going on?”

“We were under the tree reading. He touched me, Momma!” the young girl cried.

“Honey, you shouldn’t be out there under the tree with him,” said the Mother.

The incident was never discussed again. The words “Honey, you shouldn’t be out there under the tree with him,” haunted me through childhood and adolescence. Those words replayed in my brain every.single.time I made a bad choice. Guilt and shame haunted me for a very long time.

TEE EMM EYE, you might say!  And, I wouldn’t blame you. However, I share this story for two reasons…

  1. I know I’m not alone. Perhaps there are trees, hidden or otherwise, that overshadow your path. While shade can provide respite, sometimes you must run from cover. Exposing yourself to the light of day can stomp out the darkness that lurks.
  2. The story no longer defines me. Life has unfolded in amazing and unexpected ways. For a long time I was embarrassed for that little girl. Now, I embrace her strength and courage. When I am scared or anxious, she bravely takes me by the hand and showers me with love and acceptance. We work through fear together. She reminds me to follow my truth.

May the child from your past surprise you with clarity today!

child in tree

© 2013 The Musing Maven, all rights reserved.



  1. Wow Sandi. You are so brave. The more I get to know you (and I am really getting to know you better through your wonderful blog), the more impressed I am, and the deeper our friendship. Cheers to clarity and acceptance.


    1. Thanks, Marilee! Life is a collection of many threads that make up the tapestry of our lives. The dark threads provide depth and perspective. Thanks for embracing these aspects of my story. Blessings to you, today!


  2. Thank you for sharing this. It is is a very powerful reflection. I myself am “running from cover” in writing my memoir. I think there is good wisdom in this and I hope your message reaches far and wide so that many others with a similar experience will do the same.


    1. I believe the recent “flashback” from your blog helped inspire me to ‘go there’. Feel free to share details about child abuse awareness month here so that my readers can learn more about being part of the change factor. Your story is inspiring!


  3. A fellow blogger shared a similar experience. Similarities are astounding… which tells me that others can benefit from the sharing. For anyone with similar experiences… I encourage you to take your inner child by the hand today and celebrate the amazing person she has helped you become!
    Check out the April 14 entry titled “Into the Sunlight”


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