“Bloom Where You’re Planted.”
It’s a beautiful catchphrase and trendy pillow cover quote. The sentiment falling within the same realm of “Home Is Where The Heart Is” and “Choose Happy.” All of which I immensely enjoy employing in my own mindset and everyday life.
Guess what else blooms?
And, yes, the picture above is a WEED. Joe Pye Weed to be precise. A gorgeous, indigenous plant of Nebraska.
But let us stand outside of our social constructs for a moment and hone in on the definition of a weed. According to trusty Merriam-Webster, a weed is “a plant that is not valued where it is growing and is usually of vigorous growth.” Even better, within the same definition, “a weed can also be an obnoxious growth, thing, or person.”
A fascinating mindset to consider. I was (almost) today years old when I learned that there is no actual scientific genus, species, or classification that is a weed. Weeds are a social construct. A definition given to something that we do not place value in and is in a space we do not want it in. If there is a rose blocking the door to my house, it’s a weed!
Mind-Blown . . . .
As I realize that not only do I have weeds in my garden, but weeds in my LIFE. Okay, okay. I really don’t have many weeds in my life. At the same time, I’m realizing that I have dug up several weeds throughout the years (read: toxic people).
All at once, this blog goes from being about weeds of the plant variety to a much more diverse and deep topic of human diversity and personal boundaries. Bet you didn’t think that was coming!
Just like people, places, and things in our lives that we may not value, appreciate, or find downright toxic, weeds also have names and faces. Tansy, Chicory, Violet, Wild Rose, Dandelion, Prairie Sage. Some you may recognize, others maybe not. But seldom do we relate the term violet or rose with one such as dandelion. What was it that Shakespeare bestowed upon us,
“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”
And just like some people, places, and things, weeds can be toxic. Some “weeds” also have medicinal properties, recipes of which have been passed down by indigenous tribes for generations and completely undervalued, much like some people are (who are those people in your life?) Dandelion, Chickweed, Stinging Nettle, Yarrow, Wormwood, and even the beautiful and voracious Creeping Charlie all have medicinal qualities in the hands of someone who knows how to handle them correctly.
Could not the same be said for people in our lives? We make decisions about our relationships with others based on the happiness vs. stress they provide and impose on us. If we decide the pros outweigh the cons, we might (even subconsciously) create management tactics that allow us to enjoy those people while allowing their good qualities to become redeeming for their not-so-desirable ones. And occasionally, a weed, or a person, is simply too toxic to tolerate and our lives are better off without them.
At the end of the day, you decide. It is literally your decision about what in your life warrants the category of a weed. I would encourage you today to take a closer look at your garden (of life). National Weed Your Garden Day is June 13. Weeds are often times species of plant life native to the area in which you live. Because of this, they can become “invasive” or hard to control without proper knowledge and management of their growing systems. What if a rose was renamed dandelion, how would that change your perspective?
What if you chose to view the positive qualities and strengths of someone who would normally get under your skin and make the conscious decision to allow them to provide happiness in your life?
Could looking at weeds in a different way be life-changing? I think so.
And as always, You do you, Mama.