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Lessons From the End of a Marriage

A “How to Thrive” Guide After Divorce

Water the Flowers

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In my old life, I had a one acre yard that I was determined to turn into a woodland garden. Every year, from February to June and again in the fall, I planted small starter plants and divisions. By the third year, I had these petite and vulnerable plants spread across the entire yard. Watering them became a real chore and usually resulted in someone being ignored (and possibly even killed if it was particularly hot or dry). Something had to change.

I spent one summer laying out a complicated, serpentine labyrinth of soaker hoses, each long run connected to a water source with an individual control. I planned it out so that the water guzzlers had the higher pressure lines and the more drought tolerant had the lower pressure side. Once my project was complete, I could water the entire yard throughout a day with only five minutes of actual effort.

And it worked. The plants that were tucked in the back of the yard or in easily forgotten corners finally received a regular drink just like their more prominent brethren. They showed their appreciation by putting on size, often triple that from the year before.

Whatever we nurture, grows.

By the following season, there was a marked change in my garden. The tiny little plants, once isolated in their adult-sized spacings, began to knit together. When I gave a tour of the yard, I no longer had to speak for my plants, explaining the vision. They spoke for themselves. They were healthier. And I was happier, as my time could be used for more skilled and pleasant chores than holding a hose.

Yet all was not roses.  There were a few runs where the soaker hoses had to cross a no man’s land, filled with scrabbly grass and weeds, in order to get to next planting area. As I was watering my flowers, I was inadvertently watering my weeds as well. As a result, I had thick, lush patches of chickweed and knotweed, more prodigous than any desired plant.

Whatever we nurture, grows.

In the garden, this is an easy fix. I replaced the soaker hose with a solid one in the areas where no water was needed. As a result, the weeds failed to thrive and were losing the war against the now-stronger desired plants. By paying attention to the flowers and ignoring the weeds, the garden grew.

Whatever we nurture, grows.

This is true in our lives as well. Think about where you energy (physical or mental) goes. Are you fixated on a problem area in your life? Do you focus more on your weaknesses than your strengths? Is your emphasis on what is wrong rather than what is right?

Whatever we nurture, grows.

When we spend too much time and energy on the weeds in life, we inadvertently water them. They grow. We fail to see the blossoms through the thicket of weeds. And, if we continue to nurture the negativity, it will eventually choke out the blooms, leaving only the thistles behind.

Every life, like every yard, has weeds.

Yet every life

Every relationship

Every encounter

Every situation

also has blooms, spots of beauty and joy and exuberance.

So water the flowers.

Whatever we nurture, grows.

Related: The Garden

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18 thoughts on “Water the Flowers

  1. Such a simple lesson! If you give the power, it will be taken. Focus on giving your power and momentum to the good in your life. Love it!

  2. visit, read the article and thanks for posting your article is quite good and we hope that all our friends all success and thank you all, greetings. (This is a good thing) 🙂

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