Don’t Call Me A Flower

I am not a flower.

My value does not lie in my beauty. I do not wither when plucked from my home. My roots are not shallow and delicate.

I am a tree. I am strong, durable, a pivotal force. My roots extend deep into the earth, twisting and twirling just as my history does. My past has helped me grow powerful and tall, the queen of my forest. I may shed my leaves each season and become bare and vulnerable, but don’t fret. I will revive, stronger and more beautiful than before. Please, pick off my bark, try and chop me down.

I may not fill vases, but I can start fires. I can burn and I can scream.

So please, don’t call me a flower. Don’t diminish me to a fragile, pretty piece of earth. I am a tree. I am astounding and noble and engaging. Life courses through my veins and futures begin where my leaves fall.

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An Open Letter to my Love-no-Longer

Dear love-no-longer,

My heart has perked up upon letting your image wander back into my thoughts. It’s been forever, or at least it feels that way. Have the seasons already cycled through twice since the first time we met? There was a fire between us. Instantly we connected that night, and we proved that connection in the best way we knew how- physically.

I have no regrets that our love story began that way. We connected tangibly, and I hoped it would be a matter of time until our minds and spirits followed suit. You found a home inside of me, and I thought my happiest breaths were inhaled while intertwined with you.

I let myself love you. I let myself love every piece of you, every broken piece. I let the hard parts of myself melt at your touch, I let my heart thaw for you.

But you did not love me.

As I lay awake, envisioning our love in rosy hues, you saw me in muted grays and browns. You liked me, I know you did. You tolerated me, you were amused by me, you were attracted to me. But you did not feel the passionate blaze I felt for you. You did not have the selfless yearning to please me the way I did for you.

So I started to fall out of love with myself.

You never called me pretty, and I started to doubt my own beauty. You never called me dazzling nor brilliant nor inspiring, and the light drained from my eyes.

Instead, you called me crazy, masking it a term of endearment. You called me cool and nice and ok. You constricted your tongue to mediocrity and I believed it all. I folded myself into smaller and smaller pieces, until I was ultimately the size of the minute being you thought me to be.

I shrunk smaller and smaller until I could no longer restrain my natural vigor. I finally realized that it was time to fall in love with the most important person in my life- me.

I began to be dazzling and brilliant and inspiring. I deflected all the wasted love I had for you back to myself. As my heart drained itself of the poison your plainness had injected, it refueled on bright golden and crimson sparks, the colors of passion.

I treated myself with tenderness and care, just as I had always longed for you to do. I showed myself a deeper affection than you were ever capable of.

And as I fell more in love with myself, I fell out of love with you. You, the boy who had been my north star. The boy who synchronously gave me everything and nothing. The boy who did not destroy me all at once, but instead took pieces and pieces of me away until I was a mangled skeleton of myself.

I am in love with myself. You may have been my love once, but you are most definitely my love-no-longer.

– A strong, astounding, incredibly complete version of myself