Dear Dad,
Today was the kind of day you loved. Almost 70 degrees in the middle of February, the sun shining, a warm breeze blowing and the mountain view so very crisp & clear (oh how you would’ve loved the mountains). I closed my eyes today and took a deep breath, my face turned toward the sun, just as you used to do, like a sunflower always searching for the warmth & the light. And as I inhaled, I thought of you and for a brief moment, I felt your essence wash over me and I smiled. It may seem a very small thing–and perhaps it is. But to think of you in life, and to feel you, even if just for an instant, reminds me that you are still with me. And to think of you with a smile that isn’t accompanied by a tear, allows me to feel, to trust, that healing is happening, ever so slowly but ever so surely.
I love you Dad. And I miss you so very much…

I don’t think there’s anything on this planet that more trumpets life that the sunflower. For me that’s because of the reason behind its name. Not because it looks like the sun but because it follows the sun. During the course of the day, the head tracks the journey of the sun across the sky. A satellite dish for sunshine. Wherever light is, no matter how weak, these flowers will find it. And that’s such an admirable thing. And such a lesson in life. (Helen Mirren)