The Roses

13 Apr

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis


Some of you might think the idea of allowing a legally blind man who also has early Alzheimer’s to give you driving directions might be a bad idea, and you would be right but last Thursday it turned out to be a wonderful.

My aunt had to have surgery and we were staying with my uncle Paul who is my mother’s brother. The day after her surgery, Paul insisted that on the way to the hospital we stop at the town florist to get a nice bouquet of flowers.  This sounds simple but we had no idea where the florist was located. “Can you tell us how to get there?” we asked.  “Sure I can” he replied, so taking him at his word we set out.

We knew how to get to the hospital but once we turned off the main highway we had no idea where we were. Sitting in the back seat I sent up a quick prayer. “Lord, we are taking directions from an almost blind man whose mind isn’t always clear. This doesn’t seem real smart but he really wants to do this so I am trusting you.”

As my husband drove I searched the sides of the street for florist signs. Every time I saw one, I asked, “is that it uncle Paul? “I was so sure he wouldn’t be able to see it but every time he said no, that’s not it. Finally he spied the florist and gave my husband directions how to get to it. Uncle Paul was very tired and out of breath that morning and it was quite an ordeal for him to get out of the car and into the store. As we slowly walked in, a sweet sales lady approached us and mouthed, “Is that Mr H?”  “It is “I replied. She gave me an understanding smile and explained to my uncle that she was a friend of his son. When my uncle explained that he wanted some nice flowers for his wife who was in the hospital, she led him to the cooler and told him if he didn’t see anything he liked she would make something for him right then. Uncle couldn’t really see the flowers so he chose roses.

Making it to the florist and being treated with such kindness would have made it a great morning but God is into abundance. Leaving the florist parking lot uncle Paul instructed my husband to not go back the way we came but to go on through town. Well, Lord, I thought we made it to the florist, I guess we will make it to the hospital. We hadn’t gone a mile when uncle Paul told Mike to turn and Mike missed it. We began looking for a place to turn around then uncle Paul said just keep going straight, we can make this work. We were driving through the countryside when he casually pointed to the right and said that is one of the places papa farmed. Swiveling my head to look, I asked “did he farm it when you lived at home?” Yes, he said, “all we young’uns worked the farm.”

My parents were raised in North Carolina but I was raised in Florida. When I was a child they had driven me around the small farming community where my mother grew up, but being a child I just didn’t pay that much attention. Since she died, I had a hungering in my heart to revisit those places. The farms were mostly gone, replaced with housing developments but my imagination could picture her there, running through fields barefoot and up to mischief.

We made it to the hospital with no problem and my uncle proudly carried the vase of roses on his lap and we wheeled him into the hospital room. He had no idea; God had used him to deliver one of my heart’s desires.

5 Responses to “The Roses”

  1. DiVoran Lites April 13, 2013 at 10:42 am #

    How utterly beautiful and touching, Onisha, and what sights and sounds, it it truly a paen of praise that came from a heart filled with love. Thank you.


  2. April 13, 2013 at 10:33 am #

    The Lord does work in mysterious ways, doesn’t he? Very nostalgic.


  3. Jan Romes April 13, 2013 at 8:15 am #

    Very nice, Onisha 🙂 HE answered your prayers and then some!!


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