I brought you a rose. How you would have hated that.

Last Tuesday, I felt a real drive to go and see Dan. To stand with him and to remember. I put a single rose in my car, thinking to myself how ridiculous I was. A rose is definitely not a gift I would ever have brought him, nor would it have been appreciated in any small measure.small__3306668810

As I drove to the graveyard the weather was glorious. A rare mix of sunshine and blue sky. I began to remember this time last year and how hopeful we were.

We are a modern country, with excellent health facilities. Childhood leukemia is so curable. He lived in a lovely house with a family who would ensure the height of cleanliness. He was a fighter. He would not die.

Yet here I was on my way to his grave.

As I drove the reality hit once more, that he had not made it. I shook my head trying to really grasp how a strong, lively, young boy who was rarely sick, could get leukemia.
However as I drove I began to remember the young boy he became.

I remembered his pain, his frequent admissions to hospital. His handsome bald head, and the many hours he lay on the couch instead or running around. I remembered his battle and all the battle wounds it incurred on his young body. And as I remembered, awful as it may sound, I did not wish for him to come back. Not as he was, not as a young boy who would have had such a different life to the one he had loved.

On entering the graveyard, I remembered his funeral. Yes there was a huge crowd, but it was the large number of young boys and girls I really remember. Especially the boys from his team. All only 12 or 13 years old. Some already becoming young men, others looking younger. Each carried a single rose. It made me smile to see these boys with their roses for their friend.

And so it was that today I too went to visit Dan and brought him a rose. A ridiculous present, but all I can give him now.photo credit: SeanByrne via photopin cc

I didn’t find Dan at the grave. But later as I passed the soccer field I definitely heard him shouting, and as I passed the school I saw him running.  I have no doubt that he was also running wild around his back garden at home, and in the middle of all the fun at his cousins house.

We may go to the grave to remember Dan, but if we want to find him we need to look a lot closer to home.

photo credit: …-Wink-… via photopin cc
photo credit: SeanByrne via photopin cc

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28 thoughts on “I brought you a rose. How you would have hated that.

        1. Thank you. That is such a kind thought. I really appreciate it. He was a lovely wonderful boy. Hard to believe he is gone.

  1. yes, so true and beautiful, tric. and the rose is not just a rose, it is a gift of beauty and life, a representation of this fine boy. you are simply giving back to him what he gave to so many whose lives he touched.

      1. it is, maybe try to think of it as the bright light he continues to bring to all around him. i know it is hard for you and i’m sorry, you are such a caring soul.

    1. Thanks Duncan it really struck me as I came home and passed the pitch and the school. I know you have experience of this, because even if you say as I do there is no ever after, surely you still carry Anita with you?

  2. That is beautiful. When we are where the dead lived we are more likely to see them turn a corner or enter a room – in our imaginations. I have a blogger friend whose nephew is in his third year of treatment for leukemia and the emotions are still fluctuating.

      1. Karl’s nephew is doing well at the moment. When I see or hear about parents dealing with thing like this it amazes me.

  3. I went to a family funeral today. And I can so relate to not finding him “there” at the funeral home or the cemetery. But in the running around of his young children, in the talking of his siblings and the love of his family. Beautiful post.

    1. How very sad Colleen. I am sure you’re family will continue to find him in his children and in the places he used to walk. These early days though it can be so hard to find those who are gone because the missing is so great. Much love to you and your family. xx

  4. I always love the passion in your posts. It’s as if I’m right there with you. I don’t think that your thought was bad. I’m sure he’s much happier where he’s at now.

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