The Forget Me Not (Myosotis) belongs to the Borage family. It is a tender perennial which means that plants will survive, returning from year to year in warmer climates. Here, it is treated as an annual that is grown from seed as it does not transplant well.
These pretty, petite blossoms have long signified a promise of remembrance. The vow, as the name states, is to never forget. There are many myths surrounding the naming of this plant. Some of the most well-known center on that of a Medieval knight who was killed while trying to gather the flower for his love. As he lay dying he called out to "Never forget me!” While Forget Me Nots can symbolize a fidelity to romantic love, they also have just as rich a history of denoting the strength and respect of any connection or relationship.
We are all familiar with Veterans Day on November 11th - a day to honor all of our Veterans. But did you know that November 10th is National Forget Me Not Day, another day for our Veterans, specifically those who were wounded? This day is called Forget Me Not Day as a promise to not forget those who suffered physical losses while serving our country.
During and after World War I, there was a great influx of soldiers who came back wounded, more than was anticipated or expected and suffering with missing limbs or damage to other body parts. There were few organizations or services set up to help them all. Judge Robert S. Marx, a World War I Veteran himself, and others, witnessed the travesty of soldiers who sacrificed with their blood and bodies, being neglected and so took action. Not only did he help to establish this holiday, but more importantly he helped to establish the Disabled Veterans Foundation. Since 1926, this Foundation annually hosts a sale of blue Forget Me Nots to help raise funds.
How can you celebrate Forget Me Not Day? You could make a donation to the Disabled Veterans Foundation. Or if you know of a disabled Veteran, you could send them a card or letter. You might also consider spending time with them and asking about their story and let them know that they are not forgotten. After you have taken some action for Veterans, you might also consider the spirit of the holiday and look to your own life. Is there someone important to you that maybe you have not communicated with in quite some time? Take the time and make that effort to reconnect and let them know how much the relationship matters to you. You could even send them a package of Forget Me Not seeds. Not only will you positively affect them, but you will feel better as well.
"A hero is someone who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom." - Bob Dylan
"This country has not seen and probably will never know the true level of sacrifice of our veterans." - Thomas N. Smith
"The soldier above all others prays for peace, for it is the soldier who must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war." - Douglas MacArthur
"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter the words, but to live by them." - John F. Kennedy