The book Hope for the Flowers was one I read and re-read a bunch of times as a kid. I loved it. It spoke to me on a certain level, so I read it over and over and over. Then I didn’t pick it up for a couple of decades, just smiling when I saw it on my bookshelf.

Then, a number of years ago, I picked it up again, finally, and read it once more. I started to see it depicting the rat race that I wanted no part of. But it was more than that.

Sure, the book is about what happens when you join the crowd and live your life the way other people do. But it’s also about not falling into the trap of scrambling over those less capable and fortunate than you, not striving toward something just because everyone else tells you that you should.

I now see it as a message, a beacon, for ignoring the crowd and doing what you want to do, what path you’d prefer to take. If I’m lucky enough to have grandbabies, I’ll definitely be reading the book to them.

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