Be My Valentine

Valentine’s Day 1987

Our first Valentine’s Day was supposed to be a romantic affair. I planned a meal for just the two of us, something I would cook in my then-girlfriend’s kitchen and we could eat by candle light, gazing lovingly at each other. When I arrived around 5:00 that Saturday night to start with the pots and pans, though, I was met with a change of plans.

“A friend from out of town just called. He’s in Sacramento with a flat tire and doesn’t know his way around, and his spare is shot too. I told him I’d be there as soon as possible.”

“OK,” I said. “Let’s go.”

“You’re not mad?”

“Flat tires happen.”

So we drove into Sacramento and down to the south side, about a 25 minute trip. On the way, she filled me in that this was a guy she knew from Young Life leadership, and it turned out her phone number was one of the few he had in our area and she was the first person to answer when he called. I also got the impression that he originally called thinking she could put him up for the night while he tried to find a tire place that would be open the next day, a Sunday.

By the time we got there, he’d been able to contact another friend he could stay with. He apparently figured out that she had plans and he didn’t want to intrude any further. Still, he needed a ride to their place. It turned out that their place was all the way across town on the north side of Sacramento. Another half hour or so in the car and we were dropping him off at their door.

This left us even further from our starting point, and it was 45 minutes more before we got back. All together, with driving and talking and picking up and more driving and dropping off and driving still more, it was after 7:00 when we made it back to her place.

We got take-out for dinner.

2013

My wife and I were watching television and a Hallmark commercial came on. You can bet that this time of year, their commercials are focusing on one thing and one thing only, Valentine’s Day. This one was no exception and it hit all the sappy sentiments imaginable: tell me you love me, etc.

The commercial ended and I mimicked the first couple of the sentiments to my wife there on the couch: I love you. You’re beautiful.

She looked at me and asked about the third line, “We’re not going to grow old together?”

I laughed and said, “We’re already growing old together!”

Soon the commercial (Someone You Love Has Something They Need To Hear) came on again and I decided I’d go through the whole list for her this time. Why not? It would be a shame to waste a perfectly good sappy commercial.

I love you.

You’re beautiful.

We’ll grow old together …

… in sickness and in health.

You’re still the one.

I need you.

You’re my superhero.

I’ll never let you go.

I miss you.

The thing is, by the time I finished reciting this litany of sentiments to her there on the couch, I realized that I wasn’t just mimicking a sappy commercial. I meant each and every one of them, from the first I love you to the last I miss you.

I love her more now than I did on the day we married, and she is as beautiful to me now as ever.

Growing old together with her is a life’s dream of mine, and we’ve had our share of sickness and health and good times and hard times.

She is the one for me, and God knows that she is the one I need in so many ways. I figure that’s why he’s put us together.

My wife is my superhero, able to do things that I could never do.

I never do want to let her go, and miss her when we’re apart even when I’m just out running a quick errand and about to see her again.

Yes, each and every one of that sappy commercial’s sentiments has a place in my heart. I rejoice in my wife, who is a blessing from God every moment of my life.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

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14 Responses to Be My Valentine

  1. Adriana says:

    Bravo Tim. Such a beautiful example of rejoicing in the wife of your youth. Thanks for indulging us with a glimpse of your love story for Valentine’s Day! Beyond the sap — into the true substance is where our hearts find real peace and joy.

    My favorite Valentine’s Day memory was the one my husband forgot. We had had a power outage from a winter storm two days before. We had been sleeping on my mother’s floor near her wood-burning stove with our three small children. On Valentine’s Day evening the power came back on. My husband and I decided to go back to our house to get the furnace going. We took our infant son with us and left our older two with my mom. Since our house would take hours to warm up, we decided to sleep in our camper. We crawled in bed exhausted with our baby between us. There in the darkness, I suddenly realized it was Valentine’s Day. I started to say something, but instead held my tongue — my heart was just so full of love and gratefulness for this noble man whose greatest concern was the protection and comfort of his family. In the stillness he reached for my hand and gently squeezed it. He said, “Adriana, you are my best friend.”

    No flowers, no card, no chocolate, no sap — just pure love! ♥

    • Tim says:

      And the way you cared for your family and made that final decision to just allow the love to flow rather than speak up, all of that tells me that yours is a family blessed by love, Adriana.

  2. Aimee Byrd says:

    Tim, this article is such a great valentine for your wife! Your first story really pointed out her superhero qualities. But, we need to know…what were you going to cook?

  3. Lovely. And you know, there’s a good reason why Hallmark’s been around and stays around even when people are sending cards over the internet instead of through the mail!

  4. Jeannie says:

    Thanks for sharing that, Tim — very touching! It sounds like you have a great love story going on there.

  5. Awwww Tim! That is soooooo cute! Your wife seriously is your treasure!

  6. michellevl says:

    I fall for those Hallmark commercials every time – and this year’s was especially dead-on for all the reasons you list. These are the words we most long to hear from our spouse, aren’t they?

    I hope you and your wife enjoy some take out tonight, for old times’ sake.

  7. Pingback: Saturday Celebration – Happy Half Birthday! | Tim's Blog – Just One Train Wreck After Another

  8. Pingback: Married 26 Years and Looking Elsewhere for Happiness – an anniversary post | Tim's Blog – Just One Train Wreck After Another

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