From Chicken Soup for the Soul Daily Inspirations for Women

November 16

Miriam looked out the big front window. Her father knelt on the ground, lifting something above his head, then driving it into the earth. A fine, gentle rain was falling, so she ran for her raincoat and boots and took her umbrella onto the porch.

“What are you doing, Daddy?” she asked.

“Planting a garden.”

“We have lots of gardens,” she said.

“This one is special,” he said quietly. “It’s for Grandma. We’ll plant a mock orange bush as a memorial to her, and we’ll think of Grandma whenever we see it.”

He went on telling Miriam more about Grandma—her love of flowers and music, reading and cats, and how she’d say, “Mmm, smell the mock orange” every summer.

“Do you miss her?” Miriam asked.

“More than I ever thought I could. Even after I grew up, she made me feel protected.”

“Who’ll protect you now, Daddy?” she asked.

He raised his head. “Mommy, I guess. And Grandpa. And you,” he whispered.

Miriam’s mother looked out the window and saw two figures in the gloom. One digging a new garden, the other covering her father with her tiny umbrella.

Bill Petch

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