I look at a rose and I think love. I smell a rose and I think romance. I pick up a rose and I feel its thorns. Nonetheless that prick on my finger makes me value the rose so much more. Like the petals of the flower, life will create a a beautiful arrangement of your layers of experience: each delicately wrapped around the other, creating a masterpiece of who you are. Sure you may not have flourished from the start, but as you grew your petals blossomed beyond the thorns. The thorns will make you stronger, your roots will make you stand tall. You are a rose, so stay beautiful. Photo by Sarah Jaber.