Silver Apricot Potion & Diabetes
Chapter 4: Silver Apricots
As Princess Shayna continued to sleep longer each day, Sigmund’s discouragement increased. Disheartened, he decided walk off his worry in the Forest of Friendship. There he could contemplate why his cures had failed.
After leaving the ivy covered wall that circled the Royal Castle, the Royal Wizard stopped to rest at a grove of ancient Ginkgo trees that King Alexander’s grandfather had planted when he built the Royal Castle. A legend within the kingdom said that the Ginkgo trees were planted as symbol of longevity and survival for the Kingdom of Kindness. They had been given to the king’s grandfather as a gift from a visitor from a distant land far to the East.
The ancient Ginkgo trees bloomed their golden blossoms, and sparkling silver apricots clung to their uplifting branches. Their delicate fan shaped leaflets soothed Sigmund as he relaxed against a sturdy trunk. He felt drowsy until a burst of wind whirled around him and a chill shivered across his body.
“I cannot rest, I must return to the castle to protect Princess Shayna,” Sigmund exclaimed.
Sigmund reached for a tree limb for support. His grasp shook several silver apricots from the branches. Bouncing on the ground and cracking open, they released an unexpected aroma, as silvery white fluid flowed from the shattered fruits.
“Rimsiyavyo!” Sigmund shouted in his ancient Cush language. “This is the answer! I remember, when I was a young man in Cush, my tutor explained that the milk white liquid from silver apricots was used to cure lingering illnesses. This is the cure for Princess Shayna I have been searching for. Rimsiyavyo!”
The Gingko tree is over 150,000,000 years old and is the oldest specie of tree. Ginkgo is derived from the Japanese word ginkgo, meaning “Silver Apricot”, referring to the fruit, which is eaten for sustenance in Japan. In the story the “Silver Apricot Potion” sustains Princess Shayna’s life
The Chinese culture considers the Gingko to be a tree of great distinction and dignity. It is an ancient Chinese emblem of longevity and survival, and it is respected as a loyal and historic individual, as are the Village Elders in the story.
The Gingko tree is historically known in China and Japan as the Grandfather-Grandson tree. However, only the old trees bear seeds. It is the grandson of the planter, who benefits from the precious “Silver Apricots” of the tree. That is meaningful because the roots of the story were planted by Sheila’s father, who had T2D (Type 2 diabetes) and was the inspiration for King Alexander; and her elder son, Joshua, who was diagnosed with T1D (Type 1 diabetes) when he was fifteen, will share the benefit from the fruits of his mother’s story.
As a mother, grandmother and educator, Sheila knows it is crucial to acknowledge, explain, and teach each child that: “No one is perfect. You do not have to be perfect to be loved. Not even Princess Shayna is perfect; the princess has T1D (Type 1 diabetes).” This message is significant because diabetes has become a global epidemic. Diabetes affects over 250 million people worldwide. That number is expected to increase to 380 by 2025. Those individuals must deal with the never-ending “highs and lows” of diabetes on a daily basis.
However, the message is meaningful to any individual who faces physical, mental or educational challenges in their life. The story confirms that life can present difficulties, but with healthy self-esteem and a loving, trustworthy and encouraging community environment, we all can courageously overcome life’s obstacles and change those challenges into opportunities, just as Princess Shayna does.
Sheila allocates 10% of the royalties from the sale of her book to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).