When I was young, I found some beautiful ferns in the woods. I picked a couple and planted them in my yard. They withered and died in no time. I watered them. What’s their problem? I thought.

My ex was the yard person. He liked to arrange stones and decorations, go to Lowe’s, and buy plants to put in the rock gardens. It looked appealing, but was not my style. It was hard to see the flowers as themselves.

I’m sure a lot went into making the plants sold by the home improvement stores easier to care for than plants you’d discover in the woods. Knowing just what a flower you’d stumble upon in its natural setting really needs is complicated.

Although I have only one child, it seems to me that some children, like plants, are more resilient when being raised. Easier to guide. Easier to understand. Some parents would do OK parenting a “heartier” kid, but a delicate child may be too much.

In a perfect world, people who become parents would commit to understanding the needs of the child, instead of expecting the ferns to be OK with a garden variety treatment applied to all.

My kid is not easy to raise. Just fascinating to raise.

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