I’ve always loved Valentine’s Day. What girl doesn’t want an entire day to celebrate love? “Oh, love, sweet love.” I’m a sucker for love songs too.
When I was a kid in grade school, we each decorated a fancy box with white tissue paper and hearts cut from red construction paper. A hole was slit in top of the box. Our classmates dropped in Valentine cards with all sorts of silly sayings on them.
Some even contained candy hearts with sentiments such as Be Mine. Love You. Kiss Me.
After getting married, my husband showed up the first few years on the love holiday empty-handed. He quickly learned that a Valentine’s Day without a gift or card did not a happy wife make. Especially when my friends got together the day after to share what they received.
He got the message. He didn’t always buy a card. But he got it about the candy. After we had three little girls there were always four boxes of candy. Years later, he added red roses to his gift giving.
And then as the years went by, shopping became difficult for him.
I told him it wasn’t necessary to express his love through gifts and cards. We had our share.
However he somehow felt he was shorting me.
He became adept at finding other ways to surprise me.
One year he drew a huge heart on white paper, colored it with a red pencil and wrote, “Happy Valentine’s Day, Dear. I Love you.”
Other years I would buy one card to share. I’d sign it adding a special greeting and then he would do the same.
I have several sweet cards that he made on paper napkins. He’d draw hearts and write his love message. A few times he wrote I love you in short hand which he excelled at and had to translate for me.
I have a stack of cards from him tied with a ribbon. They’re all I have now to cherish.
I miss him every day. But I realize he did all he came here to do. Husband, Father. Grandfather. Those were his coveted roles.
So ask me now how important it is to have a store bought card. And I’ll tell you money can’t buy a card from the heart.