I've been sitting at the dining table off and on for a couple of days planning out this year's effort at growing a productive garden. My husband and I have a couple of raised vegetable beds, flower beds, a couple of bee hives and a small plot of land which we seem to be slowly turning into an urban homestead. As we're gearing up to start planting this year's crops, my goal is to only introduce new plants onto our property that either provide us with food or provide the bees with nectar and pollen. That may sound like a crazy limitation but it really isn't.
So how does this foray into gardening have any connection with Dementia Be Damned? Well, in looking at flowers, I remembered that the language of flowers was popular in the Victorian Age. Flowers have been used as symbols through the eons. Flowers are still used for symbolic speech today. This made me wonder what flower is best suited for marking Alzheimer's.
I've seen Forget-Me-Nots, a lovely little five-petaled flower, used more and more recently in connection with Alzheimer's. Traditionally, the meaning of this flower is everlasting love or remembrance of those who died in war. Using the Forget-Me-Not in connection with Alzheimer's makes sense when you think of it as love and remembrance. However, for me, it remains firmly associated with weddings and romantic love.
In poking around a bit more, I came across the Strawflower. It is also known as the Everlasting flower because it tends to hold its colors and shape for a very long time when it has been cut. Traditionally, it means "never-ceasing remembrance."
Syringa, also known as Lilac, means love or memory.
In Japanese tradition, the Red Spider Lily represents "never to meet again" or lost memory.
I've been contemplating a flower tattoo in recognition of how Alzheimer's has touched my life. Perhaps, I'll get a small posy instead.