Why Daffodils?

My header image is so beautiful. Daffodils are more commonly associated with the fight against cancer, but for me, they’re my mum.

I vividly remember sitting on tiny blue chairs in primary school; card, glue and tissue paper scattered across the tables; children fighting for materials. We’re making Mothers’ Day cards. And every year, the same thing went on mine.

Daffodils.

My mum loves all spring flowers. Last week, when she was allowed out of hospital for a day visit home, she discovered a solitary bluebell growing in one of her small buckets, and she paraded it around the house, proudly showing it to us all, and laughing with joy at this one, tiny flower. She’s always been a bit mad.

Daffodils are her favourite though.  I don’t know why. Perhaps it’s something about the sun bursting from inside, the way the fields flush yellow in the warm spring, which just makes her happy.

After her fortieth birthday, Mum spent all of her birthday money on bulbs and seeds, and that autumn began planting spring flowers. She has become mildly obsessed with her garden, and she’s already made me promise to look after it when she’s no longer able to. Of course I will. Neither of us is particularly green-fingered, but I’ll do anything to make her happy. Even if that means scrubbing soil away from under my fingernails for a week – thanks, Mum.

Mum received the news the week before Easter, and spring flowers were everywhere. I searched high and low for some daffodils to buy, but most places were already out of stock; March is the best time for them, I guess. Even the small daffodils growing in my mum’s garden were starting to wither. We bought daisies and roses instead – bright, colourful flowers to make her home more welcoming and to cheer up the boring, clinical monotony of the neurology ward.

But I can’t let this image of the daffodil go. They invoke such powerful thoughts about my mum. I have always associated them with her, and I always will. In the absence of fresh ones, I decided to get more creative.

When I was ten years old, I learnt how to cross-stitch. I taught my mum, and then we developed on those basic skills together. We’ve used kits, made cards and samplers, gifts for family and friends. We used to have a computer programme which allowed us to make charts of photographs – her cross-stitching of my great-grandmother is beautiful.

She knows that the day will come that she can’t cross-stitch anymore. But right now, she can. Her limbs and reflexes are still normal. So while she’s in hospital, I have given her a daffodil bookmark kit to keep her hands and mind occupied. It’s a beautiful bookmark, and she will have plenty of opportunity to read it – her mountain of books is slowly increasing. If I can’t give her fresh daffodils, I’ll give her eternal ones.

And what about me? You don’t expect me to sit on the side lines do you? I’m two hundred miles away, but my thoughts are always with Mum. My next project is a daffodil tablecloth to brighten up her dining room, even in the winter months she hates so much.

This has become a slightly winding tangent, and I expect most of my posts will be. Each is very much a stream of consciousness, with little editing. I want this blog to be intimate and personal, so I hope you can follow. At the heart of each post, though, will be a theme – something which has sparked off my train of thought. In this case, it’s the symbolism of one small flower, and the happiness it can bring.

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The image was downloaded from Public Domain Pictures and is used under a Creative Commons license. If you own this image or believe it has been used falsely, please contact me.

One thought on “Why Daffodils?

  1. I think your writing is beautiful. Well written, emotive, passionate. I lost a parent very suddenly and could barely string words together afterwards, so what you’ve written speaks loudly of you and your character. I wish your family well x

    Like

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