Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Flowers (10/03/05)
TITLE: He Doesn't Buy Me Flowers.
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Yes, it's true. Six years of marriage and three children later, I've never gotten so much as a last minute bunch of blue-dyed daisies in plastic wrap from Wal-Mart on our anniversary. Forget the extravagant armfuls of roses my friends seem to receive year after year. Those will never be mine.
I adore flowers and all that they inspire - paintings and photographs, pretty printed dresses and lovely fragrant perfumes. Flowers must be one of God's most joyful gifts of beauty to creation. The tiniest bud can evoke a bubbly, happy feeling inside me. Just tonight at the grocery store as my husband was checking out, I spontaneously grabbed my baby daughter from her infant seat and we waltzed together down the aisle to the flower stand to look at a bunch of large, brilliantly colored orange and pink Gerber daisies. "Flower," I told my daughter, sniffing loudly at them to teach her that flowers smell good. Her eyes opened wide with delight as she grabbed at the nearest bloom and tried to stuff it in her mouth. We giggled, and our night was just a little more special. I love flowers, and my husband knows it.
So why does my dear husband not buy me flowers? I guess I'll have to let you in on another little secret. Flowers look so perfect in the florist's vase, or just carefully wrapped up in soft tissue in a pretty box. But the minute they are dumped into my care, they start to look ugly, wilt and finally die an awful death. I’m an irresponsible keeper of flowers and dread taking care of them. I barely remember to make my bed every morning, let alone change the water in the vase – a formidable task for me. So I let the flowers sit there for days, and even after the outer petals start to turn brown, curl up and float down, I'm still too lazy to attend to it. Then after two weeks, I start to smell a bad rotten stink, and finally I hold my nose and try not to gag as I throw the whole thing out - vase and all. Then, to add insult to the injury, I get the joy of cleaning up the mess of dry brittle flower guts left scattered behind.
It's true...the sight of a beautiful garden makes me sigh with rapture, and driving by a field of wildflowers is enough to send me into ecstasy, but put a vase of flowers on my nightstand and all I feel is dread. So before we got married, I told my husband, "Under no circumstances are you ever obligated to get me flowers. In fact, if you love me, please don't." Now, being a stubborn man, he has on rare occasion surprised me with flowers anyway. (And those poor flowers... they never fail to suffer the fate of an unsightly demise at my hands.) But never an expensive bouquet. And never on our anniversary
When we were dating, he bought me a sexy summer dress. When he proposed, he presented me with a sparkly diamond solitaire. When we got married, he pledged me his life. When I gave birth to our twins, he gave me three huge candy bars with sweet notes written in the wrappers, and changed every single diaper for eight days. When I had our third baby, he brought me meals in bed for a week and kept the house in perfect shape, just the way I like it. No, he doesn't buy me flowers. But the many things he does to show me his growing devotion and undying love - those are his flowers to me, and they are the most precious and fragrant kind of all. He doesn't buy me flowers, and I love him more for it.
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