Pretty big fan of Valentine’s Day here. As a kid I loved the parties at school. This was before the days of mandatory Valentines. Which I happen to be super fond of since my boy has special needs. He is in a remedial class with kids younger (and sometimes meaner) than him. It was nice to see him receive a pile of Valentines from his classmates yesterday.
As a young woman my Dad gave me my Valentines. Usually candy, but sometimes flowers, especially when I had a rough year. Me and my Dad both love candy.
Then I met Husband and he took over the role of Valentine. He would hunt down those amazing chocolates from the places that made wedding cakes. They had crazy, unusual flavors. I cut them in quarters before eating them so they would last. Once he wrote me a little poem when I was pregnant on V-Day.
Then he sorta’ stopped and that’s when I became the one who celebrated for the both of us. My crafty plans and ideas sometimes needed the enlistment of friends. Like if I had to build a tent. I spent a small fortune on making every detail perfect. But then I became tired. We didn’t know it yet, but I was sick. And so neither of us really did anything again. Until this year…
Last year being what I call our “10-year itch” we almost went our separate ways. Well, he was content to keep going. I was ready to walk out the door. In fact, I actually made the decision to move out and we told the kids and watching their horrific response was what kept me home. Although, I couldn’t stay in the house with Husband. I needed time to heal from old scars and fresh wounds. So we bought a camper, with a kitchen and a bathroom and enough room to house all of my books. It also had a nifty little bunk bed that folded out above my bed so that my boys could take turns sleeping in the camper with me. I designated cabinet space for their personal things and tried to keep it fun. Like we were camping together over the summer in our big back yard Before signing the papers to purchase the camper I told my Husband that this may not work. I still may have to move. Was he sure he wanted to sign a lease for this thing? My extremely frugal husband said the one thing I’ll never forget. “If it gives me one more day with you, I’m buying it.”
Today he is taking me on a Kansas City Mob History Tour and then we are having dinner at Cascone’s. It’s a restaurant notorious for former mob activity and is said to still be under the ownership of a man in the Mob. It is perfect. I LOVE the Mafia. I have always had an insatiable thirst for knowledge about the Mafia/Mob. I probably know more about these men than some of their own wives do! I’ve read the biographies, autobiographies, watched the documentaries and researched all-things mafia online. I mentioned once that I wanted to learn more about Kansas City’s Mob history by taking one of the many tours available. He remembered. And booked us for a tour and reserved us a table for dinner- I didn’t mention visiting Cascone’s. He came up with that one all on his own.
I’ve been thinking a lot about what saved us and got us to this place, from the place we were. To say God is just too vague. But yeah, God.
“There is no greater joy than to lay down one’s life for another.” If I treat Husband as if his needs is more important than my own and if he treats me as though my needs and feelings are more important than his, we are “laying down our lives for one another.” When we decided to work on our marriage instead of move forward in a formal separation, it was an effort on both of our parts to take everything we learned from Christ and apply it to ourselves. We joined our hearts together in complete honesty trusting that the other person would be “safe.” When one of us falls down, so to speak, the other one is there for support and to encourage and forgive in love, instead of blame or scold, or worse, scorekeeping. Becoming this way has made us honest. And honesty is something we were struggling to maintain before the separation. Because everything we did made each other angry. So we laid it all down. Stopped blaming each other, and looked at how we could love the other best. I care for him as though he were a limb. Spiritually, he is more than a limb. He is half of me. That’s the marriage I wanted and now it’s what we have.
I am not sure what the future holds for us. Hopefully we will remain married until we die. But people change and I can’t claim to know that what works now will work in 5 years. I hope so. Because love (and essential oils) have been really good for my kids, my health and my joy. I hope the same for you these days friends.