The Lilac Bush

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On Sunday, we stopped at one of our favorites stores to buy more candles and other things that smell good.  They had their spring lineup out meaning they had replaced a lot of the pine and cinnamon with more floral scents.  I picked up one called fresh cut lilacs which is always one of my favorites.

Why?  Because the scent takes me back – way back to our old home.  For some reason, there was a lilac bush in the middle of the back yard which always made mowing the lawn a bit of a challenge.  There were several more in the woods at the edge of our yards.  The lilacs were one of the first things to flower and Mom would always cut branches and bring them in.

But we could also smell them in the yard when we were out playing.  There would be those spring days where the air was heavy and the smell of the lilacs was much more intense and it would just hang there.  That’s when you knew a storm was coming.  Funny how you could just start to sense those things long before we had the Weather Channel and every station has some kind of super Doppler Radar and they seem to relish those days they can interrupt programing to give us wall to wall coverage of severe weather.

There’s a lot tied up in that flower.  But now there is some sadness attached to it.  Tomorrow will be one month since Mom died.  There are days when it still doesn’t seem real.  I got a sympathy card from my sister in law.  She and my brother in law were with my wife at school when we first started dating so they met my parents.  Anyway, she was sharing some memories about Mom inviting them to our house for Thanksgiving and said some really nice things.  My first thought was that it would be nice to share this with Mom which is a little silly when you think about it but that’s where my mind went.

I’ve dabbled a bit in our family history.  Mom was much more into it than I am but I’ve traced back several generations on both sides.  Ancestry is kind of like a treasure hunt.  You hit dead ends on multiple paths but, sometimes, there is a new hint that gets you back another generation.  Had that happen last night and the first thing I thought of was calling Mom since I got another branch of her family back to Northern Ireland.  Of course, I couldn’t call her but it was just my first natural thought.  I suppose those things will fade over time.

The bad thing about Ancestry is that there will be a time that I log in and there is a little green leaf next to her name and the hint is about her death date.  For some reason, I couldn’t bring myself to enter the information.  Silly because it won’t change the outcome but it just seemed so final to enter that information into the box with her name on my family tree.  I suppose it will have to be done but it just isn’t time yet.

There were just some other unintentional reminders.  Yesterday was the Super Bowl but Mom died on the day that the playoffs started.  Seems silly to tie it to football but there was a TV in her room and it was turned to the game so that’s now locked in.  There’s a store in their town that sells gourmet dog treats and Mom would always bring some down every time they visited.  The dogs loved it and she would, of course, spoil them with treats.  One of the days we were up there, we stopped in to buy some and they just ran out the other day.  Again, this is silly little stuff but I guess when your mind makes these random linkages, this is what happens.

Didn’t want to drag you down but I also didn’t expect a candle to do this.  And I just needed to say a few things.

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