Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Write in the MYSTERY genre (04/05/07)
TITLE: THEN THE FLOWERS BLOOMED
By Roxanne Howard
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I remember like it was yesterday. I was at work and my co-workers and I was talking about the funny things people sometimes say. I told them that my mom had a pet peeve about young women today. How they stay in a relationship that’s abusive and some of them even think it’s their fault that they’re being abused. She had always said love doesn’t hurt and nobody deserves to be beaten. Even if a man came home and found her cheating on him, he has one of two choices. Pack her bags and tell her to get out or forgive her and try and work it out. But one of the things she used to say that my sisters and I didn’t understand was “I love you as long as you let me love you.” And just as I thought my co-workers looked at me and just started laughing. And I asked them, what does that mean? Just then one of my co-workers told me I had a phone call. I just knew it was my youngest daughter calling me again for something that could wait until I got home. But instead it was my sister on the phone saying that my mom was standing at the bus stop around the corner from where she lived and had passed out. A Good Samaritan saw her and called 911. My world had just fallen apart.
As I arrived at the hospital my youngest sister greeted me and she told me that my mom was woke and was responding to the doctor’s questions. That she knew she had passed out, she knew who my sister was but when he asked her what year it was she started to say 1990...something and it was 2005. But the doctor said that wasn’t anything to be alarmed about. Little did we know it was about to get a lot worse.
By the time all of the immediate family (my two sisters, my seven children, their dad and my two grandkids) got there my mom had fell into a comma.
The doctor told us that she had a major stroke and it didn’t look good.
Since my mom was in intensive care we couldn’t put real flowers in her room. So I went to one of those craft stores and bought some artificial flowers and an angel to put in her room to watch over her. The flowers were a bouquet of pink roses that weren’t opened. They were perfect.
Two days later though they pronounced my mom brain dead. We went in as a family and then one by one to say our good-byes. I took the flowers and the little angel home. The funeral was beautiful and the weather was perfect for October. When everything was over and I returned home I notice that the bouquet of artificial roses. Some of them had bloomed! I asked my children did they mess with the flowers. They did not. Even my grandkids hadn’t touched them. We were shocked. How can a bouquet of artificial flowers bloom? I tried to pull open some of the ones that weren’t opened. They wouldn’t budge. So no one could have pulled them opened. To this day I really think it was my mom telling us she’s in a better place and letting us know she’s happy.
And as for your quirky little saying mom, I get it now. You’ll love someone as long as the relationship is going well. Sure there may be disagreements, arguments maybe some heated discussions. But when it comes to physical or even mental abuse then that’s it. Love can’t live here anymore. Love doesn’t hurt and it certainly doesn’t tear you down.
We miss you MOM:(
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