And they did.
"Mamma, if I plant this will I get flowers?", asked the older one thrusting a sprig of buds towards me.
"Not if you stick it into a pot", I told him, "but if you keep it in water, it may flower."
"Great!", he said as he filled a bowl with water and placed the buds in it. "Now I will get flowers, and I can give them to my teacher."
His enthusiasm was contagious, but I had to sound a note of caution. "Sweetie", I said, "sometimes, after they are plucked from the plant, buds don’t flower."
"These will flower", he insisted. "You told me they would."
"I said they might flower", I corrected him. "It is possible that they will flower, but they may not. I don’t want you being sad if they don’t flower."
"I know they will flower", he insisted stubbornly.
His faith was touching, but I was scared. I had no experience with that particular flower, and didn’t know if it would flower or not. What if it didn’t? Wouldn’t he be terribly disappointed? Would he ever be able to trust again? I was almost tempted to get a flower and stick it into the bowl when he wasn’t looking.
The first thing he did on waking up the next day was to run to check if the buds had flowered. They hadn’t but he didn’t seem too disappointed. "They will flower tomorrow", he declared.
I was thrilled to see the beautiful flower floating in the water. But while my son agreed that the flower was indeed beautiful, he didn’t seem to share my excitement at having it bloom. "But I always knew it would flower", he told me when I asked.