I can’t remember many of my childhood birthdays, but I do remember my sixth. My mom apologized to me because she wouldn’t be with me, and headed to the hospital to deliver my sister Angie, who was actually born on my birthday. Before she left, she gave me a special gift, also one of the only childhood birthday gifts I remember, and one that I still have. She gave me a necklace with a dogwood blossom on it and explained to me that dogwoods are very special, and that the dogwood’s blossom is symbolic of The Cross. Legends abound about the dogwood tree relating to the Crucifixion, but my mom kept it simple and I have never forgotten.
I love that every year, I can count on the dogwoods on our property being in full bloom on Good Friday, as if they know that this is the time.