One spring, my husband noticed a gorgeous, leafy vine growing near our front door. It would make a beautiful surrounding to our entryway, so he placed a few wires and nails to help the vine wrap around the column and up over the door. Once those nails and wires were in place, the vine flourished, and soon the entire area was covered in brilliant leaves. Wow– gorgeous landscaping with very little cost!!!
That same summer, my husband developed an odd rash near his eye. He treated it and treated it, but it never went away. Our son developed a rash, too, and couldn’t seem to rid himself of it despite several applications of very potent medication.
You guessed it—the vine was an unusual and attractive species of poison ivy! My son had apparently brought a little of it to the house on his clothes from a trip to the woods, and it dropped near our front door. Naturally, it took root and grew. Then my husband—noticing only the pleasing aspects of it– had shaped and nurtured it so it would flourish, unknowingly causing pain and discomfort.
And neither ever suspected that the painful symptoms were caused by something that seemed so attractive. After, my mother-in-law took a close look at the vine, and found reference to it in a book, she let them know the source of their continuing discomfort.
Thank goodness, because no matter what we used to treat their rashes, every time they walked through the door and brushed up against the vine, this re-exposure would cause the rash to reappear– although they had no clue WHY the painful rash was returning!
After discovering this vine he’d encouraged was the cause of his and our son’s rash, he toiled to remove every last trace of the vine and its root.