As we enter the last month of the year, let us remind ourselves of the great sacrifices and struggles we've overcome. Yes, this pandemic has rattled all of us. It has exposed the vulnerabilities within us and the uncoupling among us. Yet, like so many that surround me, I hold on to hope and commitment as I journey through these challenging and changing times. And, I know I cannot do this alone.
In these perplexing times, I am reminded of a story my colleague Jenny Eames shared with me several years ago. Consider the seed of the giant sequoia. It starts at the size of a flake of oatmeal and grows into a tree that easily reaches heights of 200 feet. Couple this with another illustration given by the root systems of these giants and you have a recipe for success. The roots of the sequoia are very shallow for trees of their size, reaching to depths of less than 20 feet. However, they grow wide and reach up to an average of an acre per tree. Because of this we find these giants growing in groves with their roots growing intertwined with each other providing protection and stability that enables them to reach such heights. Evidently, this is an amazing feature of nature that beckons a call for coordination.
I hope this depiction reveals to you that we are truly in this together. These are moments in time that can bring us closer to kinship and kindness. We cannot let the current COVID-19 pandemic divide us. We cannot let our recent wildfires contain us. And, we cannot let our troubles define us. I am a firm believer that we need a network of peers to reassure us that we are not alone in our distinctive paths forward. Let us gain a better understanding of what it truly means to love for, hope with and have faith in community now more than ever.
The time is now and the season is upon us.
Eddie Valero, Supervisor, District 4
Tulare County Board of Supervisors