It’s a good thing May is a long month with all 31 days to fit in so much on the calendar. Maybe other parts of the world are not so busy, but North America has five significant dates: May 5th is Cinco de Mayo for the country of Mexico, the third Monday in May is Victoria Day for Canada, the third Saturday and the fourth Monday are Armed Forces Day then Memorial Day for the United States, and all three countries also celebrate Mother’s Day on the second Sunday. That’s more than one special event a week. There are many people from one country or the other that live and work in a different one. Plus, as good neighbors we take an interest in each other. No matter where we live on the continent, we can think of others on Memorial Day.
Memorial Day is one of mixed emotions, from the grief and somber reflections to the happy and carefree kickoff to summer. First known as Decoration Day, over a century ago, General Logan proclaimed the day as “designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country.”
There is an old saying for this time of year, April showers bring May flowers. Somehow, that seems to apply to emotions too. A flower contains both a beginning and an end. We use flowers to express our joy and sadness. A flower on a grave, or tied with ribbon for mothers, or a sprig shared with a friend carries a message from our hearts.
Today, Memorial Day, no matter where you live, could you and your child think of others and remember with a flower?