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May 21, 2011

Looking Back: Reflecting on the awakening flowers of springtime offers hope

"April showers bring May flowers." How many times during life does a person hear those words?

Many a springtime brings a lot of rainy days, but remembering the flowers to come, my spirits are always lifted. The browned grass starts to turn green and finally the warming breezes dry out the soggy mud.

After a long, hard winter that older folks think will never end, the little tips of tulips and daffodils along with the many awaking flora pop their heads up through the brown, dry dismal fallen bed of leaves.

At one time I actually did measure these little "pop-ups," and each day my expectations grew and the winter blahs lessened as the weather warmed.

Now's the time to snip a few lovely flowers to sit on our table before us. Each morning we can appreciate the cheerful "good morning" message from beautifully formed living creations. How thoughtful and loving the Creator is to give humankind such pleasure.

Old age is so aggressive and something we would like to erase from us. There is no guarantee that we will see another springtime. Life can be discouraging at times and especially so as health problems seem to mount up. Many of us turn to spirituality for solace.

This is a very sobering time in a person's life. Many friends and relatives are not with us anymore.

Many questions run through our minds as we contemplate what will happen to us individually or just where are our beloved now? There has been volumes written on the subject. I have found many differing ideas that are to be confusing to the point of perhaps disbelief or hope in anything.

One thing I can be assured of is if those beautiful flowers that I so enjoy can be asleep all winter and awakened again to be part of a lovely garden ... so why not us?

Who has the truth? By my reading historical facts truthfully recorded, along with eyewitness accounts, I can really believe in what is said. But again, freedom of choosing is God given.

I wanted to know and especially so when my grandparents died many years ago. Finally I was given the opportunity to learn the answers to my many questions and logically so that believing and hoping was easy. The Bible has that information.

Several years ago my husband and I enjoyed genealogy. We searched and utilized the many avenues spending many hours at our local cemeteries. It was interesting to see numerous very old headstones with "R.I.P." engraved on them: "Rest In Peace," I thought, just like the wintering flowers.

An awaking is assured because of what Jesus Christ did for us. I guess many do believe that and I was so happy to actually be able to express my feelings on the subject as I can look forward to giving my grandparents all the hugs they have been missing.

Sitting on our little side porch is so relaxing as I soak up the warming sunshine.

The spring flowers now sway in the slight breeze that flows up our valley and the sound of the returning song birds is a delight to my ears. There is peace and quiet as I close my eyes with a sigh to reminisce about the past with all the happy times.

Now I have the time to enjoy much that I have missed. Life is extremely busy in this world of ours ... perhaps too busy to the extent of not allowing us the opportunity to count our blessings and thoroughly enjoy them ... even the seemingly little things.

So being elderly and supposedly retired has benefits that can be looked forward to.

Elaine W. Kniskern is a 78-year-old resident of Schenevus and a grandmother of five. She can reached at 'Senior Scene' columns can be found at

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