Thursday, 30 August 2007

The Worry Tree


My 8 year old daughter, Keira has been coming home from school lately quite sad about the goings on with her friends. She can't understand why they are friends one day but not the next and I tell you it quite breaks my heart to hear about some of the stuff being said. But we always try to keep the talk about solutions, so when I read about this book in the paper on the weekend I couldn't wait to get it for her.

Being a constant reader, Keira devoured it in one sitting and then sat down to tell me all about it. The main character, Juliet, worries about a lot of things going on in her life and it stops her from getting to sleep at night. Then she discovers an old painting of a special tree behind the wallpaper in her bedroom. Each night, Juliet imagines wrapping her worries up like christmas decorations and then hanging them on the tree.


Each animal on the tree has different areas to look after. Wolfgang the Wombat looks after friend worries, Petronella the Pig looks after school worries and Gwyneth the Goat makes you feel better when your sick. Dimitri the Dog looks after family worries, Piers the Peacock is in charge of minding worries about things that are lost and Delia the Duck knows it's hard to get used to change, changing houses, changing schools, even changing bedrooms. The Hole in the Trunk is for those worries that you can't quite describe.

It might sound kind of far fetched, but Keira really took to the idea. When we bought the book, the lady in the shop kindly offered me one of the posters they had, so we've put that up in her room. She says she's going to write down her worries and put them in a box by her bed, but imagine that she has handed them over to the animals on the tree.

I'm all for using whatever tools help, and if using her imagination in this way helps her to relax and fall asleep, then I'm all for it.

7 comments:

M said...

I love the sound of this book. I have a 9yo natural born worrier and this sounds perfect for her.

bluemountainsmary said...

It breaks my heart that Keira even needs this book but it sounds beautiful - so beautiful I might buy it anyway - as a just in case measure...

Outi said...

It sounds helpful and beautiful. As a mother I too find it sometimes overwhelmingly difficult to watch my babies feel bad or sad. So my heart goes out to you, Sharyn and may Keira find comfort with the worry tree.

Blair said...

What a lovely way of dealing with these types of issues, which can hurt to the core for an 8 yr old girl. I think my daughter would love a book like that, thank you for posting about it.

M said...

I gave my 9yo this book this afternoon after school. She hasn't put it down yet. In fact I've just gone into her room (9.50pm) to find her sneaking a few extra pages.

She says it is the best book she's ever read.

Thanks for the tip. M

pretty essential said...

Thanks for all your comments - and very glad that to hear that your daughter is enjoying it, M. I think it may be the sort of book they can pick up and read again when feeling low. (hopefully not too often!)

serendipity and kate said...

This is such a special idea. Loving your blog :)