The Wrong Lilies

The Wrong Lilies

Sunday, January 20, 2013


Not everyone indulges in superstitions, but I inherited several from my mother that have become so deeply ingrained that I’ve managed to pass them on to our children.  For instance, Mother was fanatical that no laundry be done on New Year’s Day.  She believed that doing laundry on that day would signal a death in the family during the year.  What that generally meant was that we washed everything on New Year’s Eve, thus starting out the New Year with everything clean, especially our clothes, which, when you think of it, is not necessarily a bad thing.  So, like many superstitions, it seems to have a positive aspect.  Not walking under ladders definitely keeps one from a potential accident.

One particular superstition that we share with lots of other folks is that trouble comes in sets of three.  Like lots of other folks, we’ve managed to find that pattern in our lives, sometimes with just a bit of imagination.  Recently we started a set of three that was, as best we can remember, one of our all-time ‘interesting’ sets.  First, we managed to become victims of a nasty tummy virus that was ‘going around’, and one by one, we each got sick, suffered, then recovered.  Then a few days later, we found, after a wonderful, heavy, long-needed rain, that a leak had caused a small area of ceiling plaster to fall in our kitchen, in the middle of the night.  That was two.  And then the very next day, about midday, our son became suddenly, terribly ill, with scary pain, and we had to call for an ambulance to take him to hospital.  That was definitely number three.

The good news is that eleven days later our son came home, weary but mending, and while his illness was very serious and we were very worried, we have all tried very hard to find the positive aspect to each of these events.  The tummy virus has made us absolute fanatics about washing our hands every single time we touch a door or a shopping cart in a public place.  The ceiling leak means we’re pushed to prevent what could be a much worse problem.  And as for our son, well, we’ve had a firm reminder of what a good and kind man our son is, how precious life is, and that we must remember, every day, to live that life to the fullest.  To tell those we love that we love them.  To remember that every day is a gift.   And maybe this ‘set of three’ is complete, at least for now.

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