When I doodle, I put my pen to paper with no purpose. I let my mind go and simply draw.
Sometimes there will be variations, but more often than not, I draw a tree.
I draw the trunk first, sturdy and strong. It’s always a relatively small tree, but the trunk is wide. Wide enough to wrap your arms around and never really be able to touch your fingertips.
In the center of the trunk, I draw a small tree hollow. Just a little nook. It's where you'd expect to find a miniature nest filled with three perfect baby birds with eggshell hats, chirping for their mother. In my opinion, every tree needs a hollow.
I move on to the head of the tree. I enjoy the repetitive nature of doodling endless leaves. Draw a curve and loop, draw a curve and loop. Over and over until I look down and see the leafy canopy of foliage that has sprouted beneath my pen. I remember when I used to be self-conscious of my leaves, always embarrassed that I just couldn’t seem to draw them right. Now, the more I draw them, the more I love them. They’re so very me. Sloppy and neat at the same time.
I draw cracks and splits winding up and down the trunk, carving life through the bark. I imagine the trunk is a soft brown, a warm mixture of mocha and cream, similar to my own skin.
I create, invisible to the naked eye, a past for this tree. A story of its life.
Nearly 6 years ago I even began to draw a small heart carved into the side of the trunk, holding two sets of initials. A token of eternity from a young pair of lovebirds.
He’s tall and broad, with smooth brown hair overgrown passed his ears.
She’s small, more than one foot shorter, with her long frizzy curls pulled into a loose bun on her head.
The breeze is warm, but she still leans against his side as he carves the heart into the unyielding bark with his left hand snug on the small of her back.
Every tree has this heart carving, still radiating love.
Last, and most importantly, I draw roots that slide and weave through the tree. They are made of warmth and love and life, and everything that makes this tree extraordinary.
I draw the roots to look like vines, curling and reaching as they spread.
Some roots soar up and become branches lost in the wild leaves. Others slide down through the trunk and slip into the ground, supporting and securing the tree.
They shoot out along the bottom of the page, branching in every direction they can, until they cannot.
I have drawn this tree over and over again for years.
Thousands of doodles on thousands of pages drawn over a decade, each tree better than the last.
As I age, I learn more about the woman that I am and I’ve realized that I am a tree. I am a tree with a huge canopy, wild and full.
My soft brown bark contains stories and carvings of my life.
I am a tree with a big heart and open branches, inviting you to climb.
I am a tree with roots that are filled with the indescribable feeling of true love, familial warmth, an ache for kinship, an obsession for Harry Potter and Doctor Who, and a million other feelings and thoughts that make me uniquely me.
I am a tree that will always be growing and changing.
I’m this tree.
I’m my tree.
About the author...
Miranda Hane is a Los Angeles based comedic actress/writer/student. She is currently completing the UCLA Extension Web Development program to pursue a new and exciting career.
When she's not busy coding, you can find her...coding some more, seriously all of her time is spent coding. Sometimes, she takes a break and cuddles up with her loving boyfriend and their two puppers.