A grieving widower begins to notice fresh flowers on his wife's grave on a daily basis and discovers they were left by a young woman he'd never met or seen before. Who was she? And how did she know his wife?
When Edgar Brooks' wife Caroline died of cancer, he was left all alone, depressed. He and Caroline had been married for 45 years, and despite the fact that they had no children, their lives were filled with love and peace.
Caroline was a homemaker, and Edgar had retired as a teacher. When Caroline was bedridden after her diagnosis, Edgar spent days and nights by her bedside, looking after her and assuring her that everything would be fine.
"You'll be fine soon, honey. And you'll see, everything will be great," he'd assure her.
Edgar noticed a young woman at Caroline's grave one day. | Source: Shutterstock
But deep down, Edgar was aware that it wasn't really an assurance for Caroline, but for him. Because he could handle losing anything in life but his beloved wife. However, as luck would have it, Caroline died of cancer, leaving him all alone.
After losing his beloved better half, Edgar didn't feel like doing anything and followed the same monotonous schedule. He'd eat breakfast at a local diner, then buy a bouquet of Caroline's favorite flower, and head to the cemetery where he sat beside her grave and spent hours talking to her.
"How are you, Caroline? Do you like the shirt I'm wearing today? If only I had a little more time with you, I would take you on a world tour. You promised you wouldn't leave me, Caroline. Remember?" he'd say to her, occasionally crying out like a child when he realizes she'd never return.
Seeing the 81-year-old Edgar sobbing his heart out at his wife's grave, nobody would believe he was the same cheerful man he'd been when Caroline was around him. But outliving his wife had aged the man in an instant and left him heartbroken and devastated.
Edgar was devastated after losing Caroline. | Source: Pexels
One morning, Edgar arrived at the cemetery and was perplexed when he noticed fresh flowers on Caroline's grave. At first, he thought it was left there by mistake or by a close friend of Caroline's who might have paid her a visit.
But when he returned the next day, there was a new batch of fresh flowers there, as well as the next day and the day after that. At this point, Edgar was curious as to who brought them there. He asked the cemetery caretaker if he knew anything about it, but he answered he had no clue.
Edgar stood by his wife's grave, baffled, staring at the flowers and looking around, but nobody appeared in close sight. Who is this person who's been leaving flowers every day?
As he placed the bouquet he brought, he whispered, "Looks like someone loves you just as I do, honey. But I really don't know who this person is. Whoever it is, I would love to meet and thank for honoring you with flowers every day."
And so, Edgar decided to skip breakfast the next day and head to the cemetery early to see if he could catch a glimpse of this mysterious person.
When he arrived, he found a young woman placing flowers on Caroline's grave. She wore a simple black dress with matching stilettos. She clasped her hands, muttered a brief prayer, and prepared to leave after placing the flowers. But Edgar stopped her.
Edgar saw the woman placing flowers on Caroline's grave. | Source: Unsplash
"Excuse me! Please wait!" he called out to her and the young woman stopped in her tracks upon hearing his voice.
Edgar walked as fast as he could with his cane and was panting heavily as he approached her. "Mr. Brooks, are you okay? You look tired," the woman said, concerned.
Edgar stared up at her, his eyes wide open with surprise. He'd never seen or met her, so how did she know who he was? "Young lady, you - you...how do you know who I am? And how do you know my wife?" he asked in a trembling voice.
The young woman smiled at him. "Would you mind if we take a seat, Mr. Brooks? There's a lot I'd like to share with you," she suggested.
The older man didn't quite understand what was happening, but he followed her regardless.
They sat down on a bench nearby and the young lady introduced herself. "I'm guessing your wife never told you about me... My name is Amanda Jenkins, and I'm your wife's daughter."
The woman revealed she was Caroline's daughter. | Source: Unsplash
Edgar's cheeks flushed, surprised by the revelation, but he refused to believe Amanda's words. "DAUGHTER? Look, miss! This is a terrible joke! Do you think you can just tell me a random story, and I'd believe that? It's a terrible, terrible thing…I have no idea why you're doing this, but please, don't insult the memory of my wife by saying such things! Caroline couldn't have children! So it's not possible!"
"I'm sorry you're learning about this now that she's gone, Mr. Brooks, but I'm not lying."
Amanda showed him a photo of a crumpled note with something scribbled on it from her phone's gallery. Edgar took the phone in his hands, and upon closer inspection, he recognized Caroline's handwriting.
"This... this can't be true," the man said in a shaky voice as he read the message.
If you find this note, please do not come looking for me. I'm sorry I wasn't a good mother or partner. Please shower our child with love and raise her with affection.
Amanda was abandoned as a baby. | Source: Pexels
"I, too, had no idea," Amanda went on. "Dad only recently told me the truth after I found this crumpled note in one of his old diaries. He and Caroline dated a long while back, and then she found out she was pregnant with me.
"Dad wasn't wealthy and Caroline's parents were opposed to their relationship, so she had little choice but to abandon me after birth and hand me over to my father. He married my mother, and they raised me with affection. But when I found out about Caroline, I wanted to meet her, so I started looking for her on Facebook and that's where I found her profile. However, I was too late."
"But this…I really can't believe Caroline kept this from me. The doctors said she couldn't bear children because of complications. I - I don't know what to say at this point..."
"I think it was fate that planned it this way for us, Mr. Brooks. I found my biological mother after she was no longer alive, and you're learning about her past just now. Maybe she was afraid of losing you, which is why she never told you. My dad always says that we can do anything to protect our loved ones, and I think she did that too."
Edgar's eyes welled up as he sat quietly ingesting everything he had just heard. He reasoned Caroline kept the truth from him because she was worried he would leave her since she couldn't have any children after Amanda. For a while, neither he nor Amanda spoke. Then Edgar excused himself and slowly strolled back home.
Edgar was a bit shaken by Caroline's past. | Source: Pexels
That day after meeting Amanda, Edgar's life took a new turn and changed for the better. He began to meet Amanda regularly and they would visit Caroline's grave together. Over time, they became good friends.
Even though Caroline's absence still left a void in him, Edgar felt a sense of her younger self alive in the form of Amanda.
What can we learn from this story?
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