In January, I bought an English Primrose at the grocery store. They were only two dollars, and so pretty, blooming in a variety of colors and in cheap plastic pots to match the blooms. I picked yellow because it made me feel cheery in the middle of winter’s gloom.
When I bought this, I said, “I’ll probably kill it but for two dollars, I will enjoy it while it lasts.” I also put it in the category of cut flowers for a vase–beauty for a moment.
Now it is May and my little two-dollar plant lives on. As a matter of fact, the last blossom is starting to fade after four months of flowers. What a bargain!
Now I have to decide if my investment should be thrown away (Who wants a pot of leaves?) or invested in further by picking a spot and planting it outdoors, watering it all summer, protecting it all winter and generally fertilizing and fretting over it for all of its natural life.
I am of the old-school when it comes to throwing things away. I still have my first potato masher, given to me in 1972. It’s American-made stainless steel and will surely outlast me.
The new school of thought is that things should be made as cheaply as possible, look good but be replaced every few months. That way, one always has a shiny new thing.
I would rather have quality stuff that is made to last. I am distressed whenever a relatively new thing breaks or is lost. I expected to have it in service for thirty years or more!
I feel almost the same way about relationships. When misunderstandings occur and feelings get hurt, I do my best to mend things, patch them up and make things last forever. Unlike a broken kitchen utensil or a spent flower, the other people have something to say about it. If they’d rather throw the relationship away than to invest time and emotion into making it last, there’s little I can do to save it.
I see my grandkids dismissing people from their lives, left and right. “Who needs toxic relationships?” they say. Or, “Accept me the way I am or disappear.” It seems they are always naming a new BFF or a new lover/boyfriend/fiancé.
I wonder what they’d do with a two-dollar primrose. I think I’ll plant mine and see how it goes. Maybe it will bloom again next spring.