The one who planted the tree does not often get to enjoy its shade.
My friend Hashim Garrett, a motivational speaker from NJ, shared this African proverb when he visited Port Jervis schools in the spring of 2023. I loved the quote and it really relates to educators. So much of the work that we do is unseen or unrevealed until many years later.
As I left school the other day, I pulled over and looked at the beautiful pink dogwood tree on campus. I planted this tree back in the spring of 2006, after my first year at Port Jervis. I received it as a donation and was looking to beautify the campus. For years, it’s sat out there dormant without any flowers on it. As I worked through my career and Port Jervis through the many ups and downs, I started to see some blooms on the tree.
On this fine beautiful afternoon, I was able to enjoy not only its shade but also its beauty. Look at the beautiful colors! Little did I know way back when in 2006 how much beauty this tree would provide on our campus. I also didn’t know where my journey would take me as I started out as a young administrator.
It’s been a great run in Port Jervis, and I’m proud of the work that we’ve done, and what work is yet to come. I’m also proud to enjoy this beautiful pink dogwood tree.
Keep planting trees, friends, and for the few times when you can enjoy the shade or the beauty, soak it in.
Thank you to Hashim Garrett for his wisdom and insight during his visit to Port Jervis schools!
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#LeadershipSparks: Take Small Steps
Quote: “Make sure you’re not just waiting for someone else to fix things, or hoping that things will improve … Figure out what’s going on and make a plan to improve things.” – Kenneth W. Thomas, author