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Thursday 29 June 2023


At the beginning of this project, I posed a question. Actually, it was a two-part question. "What do the flowers (plants) do for us, and what do we do for them?" 

It seemed like a simple little thing to ask at the time. I think, through a series of unfortunate events (I am not even kidding with this one here) I have found a very simple answer.

Before I share my answer, I want to share a bit of my journey.

I am a woman. I am a creator. I am a mother. Through my life transitions, and especially in trying to make sense of some really hard losses in the last 5 years, I have been able to see parallels between mother humans and mother earth.

I'm not going to lie. Empty nest is a strange place to be. I suddenly found myself without a mother (she passed in 2020), without children in the home (they are adults now), and when my life partner left, a twenty year long relationship built with a large extended family ended as well. I have no sisters.

After twenty five years of giving, serving, considering other's wellbeing 24/7, I'm left wondering, "who takes care of me?" There's no one. I don't even know what I like to eat for me. I've never truly fed myself. that's a new venture. I've eaten on the side, or put together what's left after everyone else is nourished. I've never shopped in a grocery store with only me in mind, ever. I think of the years of asking for help with household chores and getting, "why should I?" or, "maybe, when I feel like it." I've had every member of my immediate household inside of my body. Three were sliced out of my body so that they could live. They fed off of me for years. In retrospect, I have no regrets. I would change nothing. I might not have enjoyed marriage, but I absolutely enjoyed mothering.

It's interesting though. No one asked me to do this. I didn't plan to be a mother. I just became one, and did it, 100%. And if one of my children came in to view right now, I would light up and exclaim I LOVE YOU! OH YOU MADE MY DAY! and I would ask, "is there anything I can get you!? What do you need? I'm so happy to see you!"

And then I think of how I exist on Mother Earth.

You get it, right? The parallel? Don't you think she's the same way? She nourishes us. We take. We dig. We drink. We dump. She serves. We fill up. We enjoy. Does she get tired like human Mothers?

I started a journal of parallels. One side says: Mother Earth / The Prairie / Plants & Flowers. The Opposite page says: Women / Mothers / Me.  One example of a parallel I wrote was this:

Mother's Day. One day a year where you get acknowledged for an hour or two. Or maybe a 10 minute phone call.

Earth Day. One day a year where you turn off the lights for an hour or two. Or maybe a 10 minute blog post.

After a very, very painful personal couple of weeks, lots of nourishing time spent with Her (mother nature), I can tell you that for me, the answer is Love. What do the flowers give us and what do we / could we / should we give the flowers? Love. She heals us all the time. She doesn't ask for anything in return. She just wants to love us. 

Let's support her. Let's take care of her.

*** ADDITION - as I wrote this blog post, one of the Scarlet Runners next to me slowly began reaching out. By the time I wrote about helping Mother earth to love us because it's all a mother really wants, the tendril touched my shoulder and rested there. It was the most wholesome moment ever!!

I hope you have a beautiful day.

xo Monika


Lin said...

Lovely post - am sending a big hug. xx

Molly said...

I feel this, very deeply. Thank you for articulating it.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your experience and that of most mothers.

Monika said...

Thank you for reading. I was really intimidated to share my vulnerability. Seeing the parallels doesn't make it better or okay. But it dies shed light on how universal this is. At least I have comfort in knowing I'm not alone. Still... it shouldn't be this painful. My heart breaks for every mother. I suppose it's a much bigger social issue.

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