Friday, November 15, 2013
Dear John aka my Once-Beautiful Houseplant
To the plant in my living room:
(Click the underlined text for links for the soundtracks to this letter.)
I remember the first day you moved in with me. You were beautiful, your leaves so full of life. I yelled at my husband to go pick you up as soon as I found out the local nursery had you. He was annoyed but I just knew you'd make me happy, and you did...
For a while.
Remember the good times? I watered you and loved you. You were the star of my living room and all my friends were jealous of you (probably). I loved you so much. Until that one fateful day in July when I noticed a few of your leaves had just a hint brown on the edges. I thought you wanted more sun so I put you outside. I just wanted to make you happy.
I know I forgot you out there and I know it's my fault you're hurt and damaged. I'm sorry! I'd do anything to have the you that you used to be. We were so happy! Don't you remember?
Each time one of your leaves turned brown and fell to the floor, I was reminded of how I hurt you. I felt as though my proverbial leaves were also dying with each of yours. I felt like giving up, like tossing you away and moving on to the next plant, BUT NO. Instead, I vowed to fix you.*
I watered you and cared for you. I gave you words of encouragement. Literally, I stood in my living room and talked to you, a plant. I told you how beautiful you were. Do you know how crazy that made me feel? All I wanted was to see you succeed– to watch you become the plant I knew you could be... the one you once were. It's been three and a half long months, and what do I have to show for it? Three small new leaves at the top of a three-foot stem? Do you even want to get better? DO YOU EVEN WANT TO BE WITH ME?
You were my first fiddleleaf fig tree, and I'll always love you for that; I will. But I'm beginning to think you'll never overcome the pain I caused you. I'm afraid we might be better off without one another. I can move on to a new fiddleleaf, and you can star in some elementary school rendition of A Charlie Brown Christmas. It's what's best for both of us. I'll think of you and I promise to only think of the good times. Soon enough, we'll both heal.
*Full disclosure: Tell insisted I nurse you back to health instead of replacing you, because I was definitely going to toss your ass in the dumpster. Who could blame me? You're really harshing my living room vibe. You're lucky I married a gardener.