In the darkest days of the year, on the winter solstice, I woke up from a dream.

I was traveling, visiting a family home that felt like nothing I’d known.  I had no place there, and the house was full of emptiness.  As I left this place,  I was overcome by exhaustion, struggling to stay awake. To get to my accommodations for the night, I had to travel first in a car, then a ski lift, which I boarded wearily.  I was holding on tightly, afraid I’d fall from the sky if I fell asleep.  Beside me a river, and just as the chair lift started to move I saw my closest childhood friend calling to me, holding up a beautiful stone….a flat edged purple crystal…..and pointing to it and motioning to me “Do you want this?”  Yes! I did want it, but was too tired to turn back, yelling to her “I’ll come back for it.”  She threw it to me anyway, across the river.  I was amazed by her strength, the rock just brushing against my foot as the ski lift took me away.

In the morning Jamie, my husband,  asked me as he often does, “Did you have any dreams?” This one stirred good conversation. In the dream I was disconnected from my past, on the road, wandering, exhausted. Not too different from how I feel some days recently, awake. Exhausted physically and emotionally from working at the hospital through the pandemic, exhausted from the inequalities of the world, and exhausted by the global systems that I feel powerless to change as one little person. 

The rock, the crystal, was offered to me by my dear childhood friend that knows the whole of my story. The rock had a character of power – like the sorceror’s stone — or a rock of wisdom that seemed to be the key to relieving my exhaustion, and to rediscovering my own inner wellspring of energy.  It felt like the spark that unlocked a truth.  Like Daniel Ellsberg must have felt encountering Randy Kehler in the momentous conversation that led him to release the Pentagon Papers that would lead to the end of the Vietnam War.  Like a blooming white Datura flower, opening towards the moon in the darkness of the night.  Like the moment in 1999 when I saw the moon rise in the east and the sun set over the Pacific in the west surrounded by the energy and under the shelter of a massive California redwood.

The dream helped me realize that if I’m too tired to carry the stone alone, I need only ask for help. To reconnect with my own deepest self, I need only reach out and reconnect with my wellspring and energy source…, you, and you! My husband, my children, my friends, my community of people, animal, plant, and spirit energy surrounding me and available to me in every moment. 

The timing of the dream was perfect as we are launching the orchard website, hoping for the spark of community to create a “Field of Caring” that might lighten all our burdens. We envision a true community resource — a space where all feel welcome and energized, with beauty and spirit that can reconnect us with each other and with the natural world. Where all are safe to make their needs known and to share their burdens and their gifts.  I know that together we can be the drops that make the bucket overflow — that we together can raise up the health of our community, heal each other’s wounds from the pandemic effects (superficial and deep), and welcome all in need of justice and food security.

We need you to help us carry the stone of wisdom. Please join us.

-Julie G



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