A girlfriend of mine recently gave birth to a gorgeous girl.

She had a c-section and given this, I allowed for a grace period of 5 days before I went to admire her new bundle of joy.

En-route to her house I stopped at my local grocery store where Luigi helped me fill a large cardboard box with fruit, vegetables and nuts.

Upon arrival, I knocked on the door and was let in by the newly appointed ‘Grandma’.

I was faced with an amazing sight – a mini florist.

There were flowers on the coffee table, flowers on the dining table, flowers on the stairs, flowers on the dogs bed… you name it – there were flowers sitting on it.

Moving a bunch of lilies to the side, I squeezed my giant box of goodies onto the table.

As my friend gingerly rose from the couch, her face filled with absolute pleasure at the sight of this cardboard box.

After gracing her with a hug and kiss, she took me by the shoulders and looked me deep in the eyes – she said with full sincerity “thank you so much for not bringing flowers”.

She looked exhausted, joyous and starving… yes, such a combination of emotions does exist.

As she riffled through the food, she was amazed.

“This is honestly the best idea. Why didn’t anyone else think of this? If I get one more bunch of flowers I swear…”.

Her voice was lost somewhere between the capsicums and avocados.

As I peered at the surrounding florist shop, it struck me that in about 4 days (quality pending) she would have to empty all of the vases. Either that or live with the wretched smell of rotting stems. Not an ideal task for her stitches.

Chatting away about her new little girl, I chopped up some fruit and veg and placed them in Tupperware containers in the fridge. Then the OCD in me kicked in – so I had to do a quick tidy up with my mate ‘Ajax spray and wipe’.

Urging my girlfriend to resume her seat on the couch, I whizzed through a little list of odd jobs. They were the kind of jobs that are generally quick and easy… unless you’ve just had a c-section.

It was all thirsty work and I was tempted to help myself to a glass of cold water… and then I remembered all the glasses had flowers in them.

Don’t get me wrong – flowers are gorgeous and they certainly have their time and place. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves here, there is only so much vase arranging one can do, especially after giving birth.

As I was leaving, my friend desperately tried to push a bunch of flowers into my arms.

“Here, please take some! It’s a thank-you for all that delicious food you brought over…”.

I couldn’t accept them though. It wasn’t my moral ticker chiming up and saying “well Steph, you haven’t screamed, had stitches or given birth – so do you really deserve them?” No. I simply didn’t like azaleas.

Food = 1, Flowers = 0.

Steph Wakefield has got a long bucket list. At 24, she is the founder and owner of My Super Nanny, a free online service for parents to find child care. In order to provide this free service to the lucky parents of Australia, she makes a dollar with freelance marketing and modelling.

Flowers or food – what would you prefer? What do you take to friends if they’re in hospital or sick?

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