We bought a house plant a month before our daughter was born.
My husband was against it: what use is a plant? He favored utility over aesthetic; a plant could contribute very little towards making our lives easier, towards lessening the brunt of responsibility we were preparing to accept. On the contrary, plants require an output of energy: they are living organisms, needing light, water, a stable environment. For me, already beleaguered by the myriad physical inconveniences of nine months of pregnancy, these impositions seemed negligible, at best.
He relented. Our yucca plant was too heavy for me to move or lift with ease: he positioned it in the far corner of our living room, and I sat heavily, admiring its stately presence, a verdant exclamation in a room still devoid of much personality or color. This is what makes a home, I thought. Bright things. Living things.