So long, Martha,
This time I really mean it! I can’t fathom why our affair endured as long as it did. Every one of my recent resolutions has been about simplifying my life and paring down my possessions. The minimalist lifestyle has lured me away, darlin’. I’m trying to be gentle, but I need to tell you I have no room in my life for you.
I know. I know. You have good reasons for not believing me. Every time you show up, I cave in, despite my resolutions. The painted pine cone turkey, quilted jack-o-lantern, or paper-doily valentine leaves my fingers twitching and me desperate to take a trip to Hobby Lobby.
For God’s sake, Martha, I live in a 280 sq ft motor home. Where do I have room for a collection of china tea cups, cross-stitched wall hangings, or a moss garden?
I believe it when I say enough is enough, but then somehow I convince myself that the perfect little moss garden will, actually, fit perfectly, which means acquiring stuff I don’t need, like pots, drip trays, soil mixtures, drainage pebbles, tiny little pine trees, and of course, the moss.
I re-created a forest scene, a miniature of one onMt.DesertIslandinMaine—in your honor. I’m sure you would have been proud, if you ever cared enough to come see it.
You recommended a partially shaded place, so I put it on the dash. Of course, it didn’t look as elegant as the one perched on a marble table in your stone-floored atrium, but it was kinda’ pretty.
Unfortunately, my dashboard is my foyer, my mud room, and my staging area. Anything that’s on the way in or out ends up on the dash.
The poor little garden was crowded and assaulted by my gym bag; stacks of outgoing mail; packages; newspapers and recycle containers; and plastic bags filled with purchases my minimalist self is returning.
Surrounded by such everyday wreckage, the garden seemed to shrink and lose what splendor it had and, frankly, it was in the way.
I might have neglected the required several-times-a-day misting or left something that blocked the light or maybe even tipped the pot over, but I was still disappointed when the moss browned and withered away. I had invested so much time and money into it and now it was just dead vegetation. Maybe it’s being petty, but I blame it on you, Martha.
Don’t be upset; you must have noticed the signs. I quit ripping out articles and filing them in plastic sleeves and started giving away your magazine without saving a single piece, and last Christmas, I put off purchasing the glue gun I needed to make the rustic acorn wreath until Christmas was over. And then I didn’t bother.
So, when I got your letter in the mail today, I knew I had to finally sever our relationship—totally. It made it easier for me to do when your special offer had an asterisk near the price and “*plus $4 shipping charge.”. That just seems so unfair, Martha. After all these years?
I’m resolute; still I know I have to plan carefully. You’re a siren. Your call draws me in and your proposals will keep getting juicier and harder to resist. You know I’m easy. Last year I was beguiled just by the offer of a free companion subscription to Body and Soul magazine. It’s hard to resist this type of low-down trick, even when I remind myself that you don’t really care about me, Martha.
So, I vow to not even open your letters! They’ll go right in the trash—out of sight will mean out of mind. I can’t even trust myself to recycle the paper.
Luckily you never write me post cards. That would be just too much for me to bear.
Sayonara Martha, Your Ex-friend, Lori