My mother was beautiful. Her name was Rose.

I carried the bouquets of colorful blooms into a room with one man and 27 women waiting in anticipation for a “surprise” promised by the activity director. “Be sure to be in the dining room at 2 pm. Somebody has something for you that you will like.” The aroma of the fresh flowers was lovely. The first lady came in hesitantly, rolling the big wheels on her wheelchair. She spotted the red roses. “Oh, can I have them? They are beautiful. My mother’s name was Rose.” I asked, “What was your mother like?” She answered with great emotion, “She was so beautiful just like these flowers and she laughed a lot.” I think the flowers do a lot of different things -we talk about past memories of gardening or receiving flowers for happy occasions; the visit provides a little companionship from a friendly stranger, maybe lifts a depressive feeling……I guess it just makes everyone feel happy. That includes me too.

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