How to Love a Woman

This is love, kid. Not just romance. It's bigger than that. I'm talking about the sort that could change the universe.

Girls like flowers, so buy her flowers. It’s that simple. You’re fifteen, she’s fifteen. Not enough fifteen-year-olds give flowers anymore.

When I was fifteen, my uncle once sent my aunt flowers. It was like the Second Coming took place on the porch.

My aunt told me, “Lotta problems could be solved if boys bought flowers now and then.”

I’m inclined to agree. I know bouquets get a bad reputation among fellas your age,—which is a shame—but these boys are missing out.

There’s nothing more exhilarating than standing on a doorstep, wondering if she’ll like zinnias, if she’ll like you, or whether her father has violent tendencies.

Also, I feel obliged to tell you, this new girlfriend isn’t just a girl. This is a human.

The problem, of course, is that each underwear ad, swimsuit magazine, and perfume commercial is trying to make her into something else.

This world has done women wrong. It’s ruined their confidence. It expects them to be scholars, nannies, interior decorators, chefs, maids, and ER nurses. It tells them to be leaner, tanner, taller, slimmer, faster, trendier, sleeker, and blonder.

And if that doesn’t break your heart, let me tell you about the sixteen-year-old whose boyfriend told her she was fat.

He made fun of her. She went on a diet. Dyed her hair. She eventually lost a few sizes, then she had a few bouts with anorexia. It was bad. She’s in therapy now.

I’m no expert, but she didn’t need carb-counting. She needed flowers.

I guess what I’m trying to say is: I know you’re only a kid, but I’m counting on you to save the world.

Long ago, our ancestors gave us a society with country dances, fiddle bands, and walks home after dark. We ruined it. We traded the whole thing in for rock music that sounds like angry chainsaws, and mass shootings.

Listen, this is about more than proms, holding hands, snuggling, and whatever else fifteen-year-olds do. This is about something big. In fact, it’s the most important thing of all time.

It’s about learning to be unselfish, unconditional, and understanding. How to be wrong, and how to admit it.

It’s about seeing a person with your eyes closed. About opening doors for anyone you’d call ma’am, miss, or Mama. About decency.

This is love, kid. Not just romance. It’s bigger than that. I’m talking about the sort that could change the universe. I wish I could tell you more about it, but I’m still learning.

Though there is one thing I can say with certainty.

Buy her flowers.

8 comments

  1. LW - November 28, 2016 8:31 pm

    U pretty much nailed it on this one Sean………and yes, we do need “them” to “save the world” since we r getting OLD…and “they” have stopped listening, not that “they” ever did!

    Reply
    • Donna O'Brien - June 22, 2018 5:26 am

      I will never forget Bodie Murphy giving me my 1st dozen of Rose’s on my 16th birthday. Such a sweet memory. 💕

      Reply
  2. Lew najor - December 19, 2016 1:53 pm

    And sometimes those flowers can come from the roadside ..
    It all has the same thought & meaning .
    Thank you for writing things that tap the soul .

    Reply
  3. Elizabeth - January 29, 2017 7:33 pm

    Cheers to you, sir!

    Reply
  4. Sherry Johnson - February 1, 2017 5:47 pm

    I still love to get flowers at any age. Flowers can go a long way to help solve a lot of marriage problems.

    Reply
  5. Sherry Johnson - February 1, 2017 5:51 pm

    I love to get flowers at any age. Flowers can go a long way to help solve a lot of relationship problems.

    Reply
  6. Amelia - February 2, 2017 8:10 pm

    I still have a locket with pressed flowers in it from a boy in 1975. He said his Daddy laughed when he got out of the truck on a hunting trip to pick them for me. I loved those flowers!

    Reply
    • B.J. Browning Tolley - April 25, 2017 10:55 am

      I am truly having a love affair with Sean. With every written word my heart searches for his soul. -B.J. Browning Tolley2017

      Reply

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