The Wilted Flower

Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it. Mark Twain


It was a beautiful, sunny Mothers-Day weekend and the perfect morning to put the top down on the convertible.  The decision was made to head out to the Charlotte Regional Farmers Market.  The drive was cathartic with the sun on my skin and wind blowing in my face.  Once I parked and started walking in, I could feel myself relax even more.  There is something about that place that makes me feel more connected to the earth.  I feel good about putting real food into my body instead of processed food.

The market was bustling with activity.  Everywhere you looked there were colorful fruits and vegetables and people walking with huge bouquets of flowers that they had gotten for a bargain.  I was content with taking my time, perusing everything that was available, knowing that once I finished there, I would be able to enjoy the rest of my day with my children.  I lamented just for a moment, about how I had tried calling my mom so many years on Mothers- Day, only to be half-heartedly greeted with her brief yet polite conversation.  It was always like talking to a stranger.

I observed a couple walking in front of me with their bags of goodies and I overheard the lady tell her friend “I was so disappointed in that flower.”  I thought to myself that it was an odd statement.  How could anyone be disappointed in a flower?  Even small children delight in dandelions as though they were the best thing ever.  I wondered; “Was the flower wilted?”  “Was the fragrance unappealing to her?”  “How could she not like a flower?”  I remembered back to when I spent a lot of time in my garden and how much pleasure each new bloom would give me.

As I ended my time at the market, I stopped to look at one last table of produce and an older gentleman wished me a happy Mothers-Day and asked if my mom was here.  I hesitated briefly, and my heart hurt just for a moment.  I mustered a smiled and said “Thank you, no my mom is not here but my children are.”  And with that I walked back to my car.  In my mind I compared myself with the flower that lady was so disappointed with.  I wondered why my mom was always so disappointed with me.  Was I wilted or damaged in her eyes?  Was I not what she expected or did I bloom more than she wanted me to?  With that, I put on my shades, lowered the top back down on the convertible and decided yes, sometimes I am wilted and I know there are parts of me that are damaged. I also decided that doesn’t make me any less important than a whole bouquet of beautiful roses or any less beautiful than a dandelion looks in the eyes of a child.

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