White Roses

A while back I went with my Mom to a greenhouse as part of her “therapy” when she was having health problems. Flowers have always been her favorite and it’s obvious that the beauty and life of them fills her up when she is surrounded by them.

While she has a green hand, I don’t even have a green thumb. Most things I have tried to take care of that depend on me to survive (as far as plants go, I don’t dare try anything more) die. However, that day I spotted a small rose plant. Not lucuiously red roses, but the small, full white ones. Two of them had bloomed into a magnificent spiral of clean, fresh pedals forming the flower itself.

I had to have it.

I wasn’t sure what drew me in as I never felt the need to buy something I would eventually let die. Something about the simplicity and purity of this plant attracted me. So, I brought it home. Mom took care of it while I was at school for a bit, so naturally when I returned home it looked even better than it had when I first adopted it. Now you know green hand is no overstatement.

For a week, the first thing I did when I woke up was water it. The pedals went from white  to off-white to a soft golden brown. They stiffened and began to fall. One by one they began to reveal the bud that began them. I kept watering, they kept coming back. A continuous cycle, like a snake shedding its old skin.

The dead pedals collected together in a pile around the pot while new white ones bloomed above them with no awareness that they would soon join the others below. The green leaves bursted from each stem up to the top.

One day I took a minute and looked at the plant before leaving for work. They had been brown for days. The only thing changing was the amount of pedals left on each stem. Some had even shrivled up, cripsy and stiff. Frozen in time.

I had neglected to water them for over a week. I forgot. I was uninterested, my priorities did not involve them. I was saddened by the dullness of something that was once so beautiful, so attractive and worthy of attention. I left, assuming there was no hope for it. It was dead and gone.

The next day, something stirred inside of me saying “they’re thirsty”. I looked around wondering what this voice meant. My mind wandered and caught hold of a memory. One that held a picture of fresh, white roses.

I went upstairs, saw the dreary look on the flower’s face and grabbed a glass of water and poured it over the dry, hard, unsatisfied dirt. I thought this was pointless. It was obviously dead; that was one thing I could decifer about plants, I had seen it many times before.

I did this for a week. Nothing happened. Each stem still frozen in time. Once in a while the play button was pushed and a pedal would float to the ground. Nothing more.

Another week went by. I was convinced I was feeding a dead plant. Until one day I noticed a hint of a bud forming on a separate stem. I thought it was just another leaf, something I hadn’t noticed before. Nope. It was a bud. And looking at it now, it still is.   It’s taking its time but it’s in the process of blooming. I forced it two steps back but it’s determined to take two and -a -halfsteps forward until it can catch up.

So, what’s the point of this? I didn’t know until today. I just figured I was learning how to take care of a plant… responsiility or something like that.

I am well aware that there is more meaning behind this plant. This magnificent creature that can bounce back from what I thought was a lost cause. God was giving me a form of his creation to teach me about myself. This is myself as a flower. A metaphor of course.

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