Yellow Rose

In recognition of what would have been my mother’s 113th birthday, I post this image of her favorite flower—the “Yellow Rose of Texas.” She was 45 when I was born. Giving birth at that age was virtually unheard of nearly 68 years ago. Though no one ever truly confirmed or plausibly denied it, I am quite confident mine was an utterly accidental birth, brought about by a pregnancy that was known about too late to safely end. My mother died when she was 78 and I was only 33. No matter how old or how young, you’re always too young to experience a parent’s death, just as a person is never old enough to experience the death of his or her child. And the same is true of the death of spouses; it tears one’s heart to shreds in ways that make repair absolutely impossible. Yet we all experience these gut-wrenching moments that reconfigure the remains of our lives and deepen both the anticipation and the dread of each new day. Knowing what we do, later in life, we realize how suddenly our lives can turn upside down and inside out. Or simply be snuffed out like a candle with a short wick and too little fuel.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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2 Responses to Yellow Rose

  1. Debbie, your memories are precious; thanks for sharing them.

  2. Debbie says:

    I have special roses planted for the people I’ve loved and left while I was “too young”. Each one was selected for special memories. Mom and Dad loved their roses, and I have their personalized license plate, “JBROSES” hanging in our garage. They continue to live through their roses, and it gives me comfort to care for them.

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