Love is like a garden...

I love the analogy of life as a garden; whether you love to garden or not, most people love to be in one. Sometimes they are organized, orderly and monochrome; sometimes free flowing, vivacious and colorful. But in all cases, they symbolize  life and growth.  The Universe is showing us the beauty that exists…and can exist if we allow it to grow with care but not control.

The relationships that are hurting us the most are the ones where we exert too much control. We prod, over tend, over-cultivate and over- fertilize. Our gardens are often much smaller and weaker than those gardens that are tended perhaps only weekly, just  to check up on the weeds that might be trying to invade its strength and beauty. As the quote states, the greatest things we can give our children are roots to grow and wings to fly. If we have neglected either, we have not succeeded in cultivating a fruitful garden.

When someone we love has an affair, it is most likely because our garden has not been tended at all after it had been planted. When we find out about the affair, we find ourselves over-involved in every aspect of our loved one’s life: holding on to them too tightly,  consistently checking  on their whereabouts to see if they are still “ours”, and scanning the environment for  danger that if we only know about ahead of time, we could ward off. These gardens are small and weak. They do not allow for growth because they are too busy protecting the seedlings from the possible storms which may threaten, all the while keeping the blooms from opening.

Mark Nepo states, “Things that matter come and go, but we tend to cling and hold on, not wanting anything to change. This fails because things do change.” When we realize that change happens, we allow things to flow through us, touch us and trust that what is happening is meant to happen, even if we must experience some loss.

Attempting to exert too much control results in weakness and resentment, too little results in apathy and abandonment.

Joseph Campbell states, “When people get married because they think it’s a long-term love affair, they’ll be divorced very soon because love affairs end in disappointment. But marriage is recognition of a spiritual identity. We need to be willing to give up the life we have in order to experience the life that is waiting for us.”

So tend your garden carefully and watch it grow with vision and commitment.

~Wendy Pegan, Relationship Builder