Sunday, May 25, 2008

Déja Vu

“Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. " ~Lamentations 2:22-23

“Then maidens will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.” ~Jeremiah 31:13

The earth laughs in flowers.” ~e. e. cummings

I told someone the other day that I had had my Christmas wreath up on the front door for a year and a half, but that’s not entirely true. Actually, I have only had the Christmas wreath up sixteen of the last nineteen months. There was an autumn wreath up there for three months in the middle.

Now, before you start judging me, know that the wreath is green and gold with white poinsettias … not exactly what you’d immediately notice as being holiday faire from the street. I mean, you actually have to go all the way to the front door and take conscious notice of the piece before you’d even realize it as being seasonally displaced.

A few of my girl friends had noticed, but ironically, it took a comment from a fifteen year old boy to make it all feel awkward enough to actually do something. I tried pointing out to him that there was a mark on the door behind it, and unless I was going to repaint the door, I couldn’t really take it down. And no, I didn’t have another wreath (besides the one with pumpkins and fall leaves on it.) He didn’t look convinced, instead giving me the one-raised-eyebrow “whatever” look teenagers have made famous.

Thanks to John, the world can now breathe a sigh of relief. I purchased the materials to create a new spring/summer wreath. My daughter and I went to Hobby Lobby to get a birthday present for her friend and on our way to the checkout, I ducked into the floral aisle to see if I could make a quick decision (we were on a tight schedule, you see.) She humored me (she wants to help me make it, so she was game) and we quickly chose an 18” straw wreath. Then, instead of picking out several different picks to mix and match (which has always been my modus operandi), I led her to the variety “bunches.” Many of them were bright colors – definitely summery, but a little too brash for my taste. I decided on a lovely arrangement (well, as lovely as you can get with fake flowers) of peach, purple, and white flowers. We made our purchase and headed off to the party.

Several miles down the road, I was suddenly overcome by a very strange feeling of déja vu.

The flowers! I have seen them before!

At a light, I reached for the bunch, whipped them out of the bag, and stared with wide eyes.

Yes. Yes! Oh my. OK, this is a little freaky.

“What is it, Mom?”

“Oh, well, um … you see these flowers? I’m pretty sure they’re the same flowers that my mom had placed on Uncle Steve’s grave when I visited it last September.”


Uh huh. That’s how I feel. A little creepy …a lot strange.

“Does that ... bother you?”

“Well, no, honey, not really. It’s just so strange! But, you know, it shouldn’t be. Really all it shows is that Grancy and I are drawn to the same kinds of things.” (Yes, it’s true. I am my mother. Fortunately, I like my mother! Love you, Mom!)

Well, I couldn’t wait to get home. You see, I had actually saved some of the flowers from the day I visited his grave site. Two flowers had fallen off of the arrangement and I figured not only would I end up with something to remind me of that moment, but I would also be picking up litter. (Yes, Dad, you taught me well. I love you, too!) So, I stuffed the two flowers in my purse and brought them home.

Now I sought them out where I was sure I had placed them some eight months ago.

They were faded somewhat, but otherwise an exact match.

A flower from the bunch I purchased (above)

... and a flower from my my brother's grave (below).


But, no, that didn’t stop me from making my wreath. No, sir! No fifteen-year-old boy’s gonna give me the raised eyebrow over my choice of home décor! =)

Even as I pieced together the weath, I thought about the mosaic blog I had just written the day before, and it just seemed to fit, sort of.

Back in the cemetery, the flowers were, more or less, band-aids intended to beautify something that was not exactly lovely. On my front door, the same arrangement has become a symbol of spring growth and renewal, of God’s great love and new mercies. Yes, I will think of my brother when I see the wreath, but that’s not such a bad thing. He was pretty cool.

In fact, I think he would have really enjoyed the humor in the situation. =)

“You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give you thanks forever.” ~Psalm 30:11-12


  1. Glad my son could be of assistance! I had completely forgot about the look he gave you.

  2.'re pretty handy with flowers. The wreath is beautiful. And, I love the brother connection.

  3. I am blessed beyond measure! Love you, too!


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