There once was a girl with long green hair. She liked to travel, sometimes by foot, and sometimes with her heart and mind. In her journeys, she connected to magical worlds and wise beings who shared their knowledge with her; this helped her to discover herself. This story is about one of those journeys.
The girl with the green hair struggled to understand the “ugliness” in humans. She knew there was beauty in them too, as she saw it many times and that gave her hope. But mostly, she saw that “ugliness” and it brought with it pain and anger.
It was a beautiful cloudy day, and the girl decided to go to the park with a rose garden. When she got there, she saw a beautiful red rose and started smelling it, holding it gently between her palms. She loved roses. Every time she inhaled their mesmerising scent, it felt like she was taking in their essence. She wished people were as beautiful. The girl laid down in the grass next to the rose bush, closed her eyes and started to listen to the bird songs.
“Hello”, she heard at one point. The voice was soft and friendly. She opened her eyes but couldn’t see anyone around her.
“I’m here look to your right,” said the voice. The girl looked to her right, but she could only see the rose bush. She then got up and looked at the roses. She saw the beautiful red rose that she smelled, moving around even though there was no breeze outside.
“Hello,” said the rose cheerfully. “Did you like my scent?”
“Hi,” replied the girl. “Yes, your scent is beautiful! I wish humans were as beautiful as you.”
“Thank you. Well, humans and roses are more similar than you think”.
“Yes, you seem surprised.”
“I am, humans are not always beautiful. They can be ugly and hurt others sometimes.”
“I can hurt you too if you hold me by my thorns,” said the rose. “It’s all about how you hold me; same with people. Imagine that the thorns on my stem are the result of the pain that you experienced in your life; and that the place that holds your heart is in the yellow centre of my flower. If your heart broke, now it will be hiding. Maybe it wants to heal, love and trust others again, but it feels that the price to pay is too high. So, every time someone gets close to it, the thorns protect it from the possibility of getting hurt again.”
“That is beautiful,” said the girl with tears in her eyes. “I never thought about things like that before. How can someone heal a broken heart?”
“The best way to heal a broken heart is to hold it gently like it is the most precious gift in the world; just as you held me when you smelled my perfume, with a lot of love and respect. The broken heart will start to open itself slowly and will heal in time. But, to heal someone’s broken heart, you first must heal your own.”
The girl had tears coming down her cheeks. She thought about the times in her life when she was like a rose and hurt the people she loved with her thorns. She also remembered the times other people’s thorns hurt her, but she couldn’t walk away from them. The girl finally understood that instead of focusing on her thorns and heal herself, she focused on other people’s and tried to heal them.
“Thank you, rose!”
“You’re welcome. I hope you will come and see me again.”
The girl got close to the rose, put her hands gently around it like she did before, and gave it a soft kiss on its petals. She felt the warm sun on her skin. A leaf fell on her face, and she opened her eyes. She looked at the red rose to her right and smiled. She now knew that the “ugliness” in humans is not at all what she thought it was, and she decided to learn how to turn it into beauty again.
(Rose photo taken by me)
Note: This story is not about abusive relationships, where the hope is that the person who abuses you will change and stop hurting you, if you accept them as they are. They will not change just because you want them to, no matter how much you try, hope and maybe even blame yourself because they are like this; the decision to change must start from them. Learn to love and put yourself first; you deserve to be treated with love and respect.