You know how those flower websites like FTD and 1800Flowers sell special occasion bouquets for reasons beyond Birthdays and Anniversaries like "Just Because" and "Thinking of You" and "To Brighten Your Day"? Well, this morning, I was presented with a nice bouquet of Hate Flowers from my husband, the "Just Because I Wanted to Make You Feel Bad" Bouquet.
We stopped at the grocery store to pick up some flowers for a family friend who is terminally ill. I waited in the car with the dog while Tim went inside. Earlier in the morning, we got into a huge fight that was a hybrid of Tim's dreams and the reality of a fight we had the day before and we were still on rocky ground. When Tim emerged from the store with armloads of flowers, I was like "wow, you sure got her a lot of flowers." He responded by roughly pulling 4 bunches of lilies and alstroemeria out of the pack and throwing them at me with a gruff "these are for you." I couldn't even say thanks because it was obviously a gesture of hate and instead replied "why did you buy me flowers?" He replied angrily "you're welcome." The anger that I felt towards those stupid ass flowers as we drove in a rare form of hate-silence was an anger that I didn't really think could be applied to inanimate objects. Why would he buy me flowers when he's mad? It was a twisted form of guilt that was so obvious that it made me even more furious.
When we finally arrived at our destination, I was like "can't we just give all of them to Cindy? Where am I supposed to put these things? The dog will eat them" and he grumbled "just put them outside in the shade." Fine. I angrily laid them down on the lawn (in the shade) and put a big rock on them so they wouldn't blow away and we went inside. For the next 45 minutes we put on a pretty good show of being a happy couple for the sake of Cindy whose condition was pretty bad and definitely made us stop and reassess....
As we got back in the car, I was pretty sure that seeing someone so sick and close to dying had provided a profound experience for both of us and that we had invariably overcome our silly fight which in the grand scheme of things is pretty insignificant. But I could not read Tim at all and he still seemed very angry. So rather than kiss and make up, we drove in silence for a good 30 minutes with the flowers wilting and dying in the heat on the floor. I finally caved and put them on the dashboard because they looked so pathetic smashed on the floor like that and they were once living things for God's sake-even though they were a symbol of anger and resentment. We drove in an unbearably long silence while the red in the flowers continued to grow an angrier hue by the moment and they even began to give off an energy of hatred. Even the crazy dog was shamed into silence.
The silence was finally interrupted when Tim spoke up and said "can you hand me those flowers? They are providing a glare and I can't see" and because I certainly didn't want to cause an accident and also because, let's be honest, I was really starting to hate those damn flowers of shame, I handed them to him. And before I could even blink, he threw them out the window. I started to cry. The cries quickly became sobs. The flowers are now on the side of the road somewhere in New Jersey, just waiting to ruin someone's day.