Give me My Flowers While I Live
A Dozen Red Roses
We have just celebrated another Valentines Day. Without a doubt florist shops across America were busy with phone lines and fax machines taxed to the full limits of their capacities with special orders for flowers or floral arrangements. I don't know what it is about flowers but most women whether they be a wife, girlfriend or mother, seem to enjoy getting a bouquet of beautiful flowers. I have been married for over 40 years and have always tried to get flowers for my wife on Valentines Day but this year she told me not to get any. She is a very practical woman and commented the roses would only be pretty for a day or two besides I don't need flowers for you to show me your love.
This year the weather had taken a down turn with our first big snow storm of the year which gave us 10 inches of snow on Valentines Day. With horrible weather, road conditions deteriorated making travel next to impossible, any intentions that I had to ignore her request gave me an excuse for not going ahead and getting a her dozen red roses as has been my custom. These would have adorned our supper table as the center piece for our annual "romantic supper" which has been our family tradition since our three boys were little. A red tablecloth with lighted candles, a wonderful steak "hamburger" and those great little chocolate Jello puddings topped with whipped cream and a cherry! We still had our "romantic supper" without any flowers and the evening was still special.
Today, while visiting a relative whose father is in a hospice facility, the subject of flowers came up. She made a comment that her father had given instructions that no special flowers should be ordered when he passes from this earth to his heavenly home. He rather wants any memorials be given to church or a charitable organization. This relative also smiled as she shared how her husband of only a few months had called her while driving home from work on Valentines Day in the awful snow. She said he told her he had gotten her roses but knowing her mom had been so stressed being the primary caregiver for her husband, he wanted to give the roses to her mother and when he arrived home they would take them to her.
Upon his arrival home, the roses were put into nice vase and delivered. When they presented the roses, a huge smile came across her mothers face and all the lines of stress quickly disipated. The gift of flowers so unexpected were received and welcomed bringing a moment of joy for her that not enough words could convey. The husband later told his wife he was sorry he hadn't gotten two dozen roses, one for her and one for her mom. Our relative told her husband, "don't you worry, the joy on mama"s face were my roses."
There is an old gospel hymn that has in lyrics, "give me my roses while I live" because when loved ones are gone, they cannot be enjoyed. The "Good Book" teaches us to love and sometimes a simple flower given at the appropriate time mean so much.