Love Blooms

By Talie

Most women like flowers right? I didn’t give the idea of flowers much thought until I met my hubby. Once we got serious, I realised I’d never really received a bouquet of flowers: I could count on 1 hand how many times I have received a bunch of flowers in the last 10 years… Off the top of my head, it’s once!

I asked him one day, randomly, why I don’t receive flowers. His reply didn’t take long and I could tell it was not something he had only just thought about. His reply was something along the lines of “flowers don’t represent what we are building…they look good for a couple of days, then they die.” Honestly, how could I argue with that!?

My baby’s gifts to me are more tree/plant-pot based, not just for decoration. Over the years, I have received many plants, my favourite among them being my orange tree. But, my children had other ideas for it. Still, it did last a good while. The latest was a cactus, which I think was a good choice, as they are very hard to kill.

Relationships are like plants: they need attention. You need to figure out what specific needs and wants your plant/relationship needs in order to survive, and then be willing to take time to nourish and guide it in the right direction. Rotate it away from the light as it starts to bend in search for the sun. Ideally, you want it to grow up straight and equal, which will prevent it from being too heavy on one side. Your partner should not be putting in all the work: you need to meet in the middle, so each party gets what it needs. Take note of how your relationship is evolving.

Then we have the big issue of space. Some people find it crazy to take time for yourself away from your partner. And don’t get me wrong, there is a fine line and many factors to take into consideration. Firstly, if there is no trust or you have doubts about fidelity, then space is not going to do you an ounce of good. That space could feed into those doubts or even give your partner the space to live their secret life more freely! On the other hand, some reflection alone could help you see that the issue may not be with your partner or relationship, but with yourself and that you are making issues out of nothing. Space can allow for self-growth if your issues are internal. Space can help you appreciate your partner so that when they or you return, the dynamic has shifted and you can move into a happier place.

Some couples are inseparable and this too can work for them. But I do question the balance and space for growth, both personally and within the relationship. Growth/space can be a funny thing: a plant can happily be in the same pot for years believing it has nowhere else to go, not dying just living with unknown restrictions. Then you upgrade the pot, giving the roots a whole set of new directions to explore, stretching, expanding and using the space to move and grow. The plant won’t die: it will get stronger with deeper roots to support it.

I do not make it a regular thing to be away from home. However, I do believe when the relationships are right, absence makes the heart grow fonder. Building up the feelings and emotions of missing your loved ones really do put your life into perspective. It reinforces what is important, and reminds us how much we can take our day to day life for granted.

So, embrace the growth and give yourself the space to stretch your roots: you won’t realise how much you need it until you do it.

Photo credits: Nicholas Githiri

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