“What lovely tulips you have”, she says. “Who did you get them from?”

“Me”, I say, grinning. “If I have to wait for someone to buy me flowers, I’d hardly ever have any. So I buy them myself. It makes me happy to look at them”

“Oh you are so right”, she replies. “Why don’t we do that more often? Buy flowers for ourselves, or do things for ourselves instead of waiting or expecting others to do them for us?”

“I can name a hundred reasons. I never bought myself flowers before because I learned that it is a romantic gesture a man makes for a woman (thank you Disney princes !), or that you bring flowers as a gift. I was also taught that flowers cost money and don’t last long so it would be a waste of money.”

We both look at each other, half smiling, half appalled at the wrong teachings we tend to get in life.

What things make you happy or feel good ?

For me it’s massages, books, art supplies, creative magazines, beautiful notebooks,…

Whenever I buy those I no longer feel guilty. I have learned to let go of that guilt and now believe in abundance (instead of lack).

Also: my word of the year for 2023 is Pleasure and those things represent pleasure for me.

There are of course about 100 other things that I love (and that do not necessarily cost money).