My wife makes my heart beat - and many times, she makes it skip a beat.
She's done this for 35 sweet years.
Have I fallen to the marketing of Hallmark to make it so? Nope.
Do I ignore Hallmark's main cash-cow day? Heavens no. (Think I'm crazy? ha)
However, do I allow it to prompt me to HAVE to get her something...um, anything....
I love my bride 365 days a year. Each day has a heart attached to it.
And each weekend I am amazed that I get the honor of hanging out with my Susan.
What caused this?
Sweet tender, gushy love? Maybe at first. Maybe.
I think I fell in love with her mind and her compassion, her strength of character and her way with people.
Not just her kisses.
My girl loved me for who I was when we were both 21 - not for who I might be in my 30's, 40's etc. She loved a young man who eventually aged along with his dreams. Then she loved the middle-aged version of that man, who saw value in waiting for things. Now, as we tip the scales of the 50's and move closer to completing 6 decades of living and 4 decades of life, she loves the man who sits at the keypad and blogs - who writes books and looks boldly into eternity.
I have a book coming out in a couple weeks about eternity and about LOVE, called Beautiful Nate. It deals with the death of our oldest child four years ago. And it deals with a love that always protects, always trusts, always hopes and always perseveres.
It deals with the story of my red-hearted girl. It deals with how a mom can love her "babies" and bury one of them when he was just 27. It deals with hope and love and faith.
Just as this picture shows from the Apostle Paul's writings to the citizens of Corinth.
The artwork and writing of this picture was made by our son, Nate, when he was 12 or so - way before the ravages and lies of "coolness" burnt his spirit and took his life.
When did I most clearly fall in love with my Valentine? It wasn't during our dating days, nor preceding my request for her hand in marriage - though those days were brilliantly etched on the rays of the sun.
I MOST fell in love with my bride when we wiped the dirt from our hands, turned from our son's open grave - a grave that had just received his body - and walked back into our own lives - together.
We held hands and silently strolled back to our car and towards our future.
And THAT DAY I realized that I loved her with every inch of my heart, soul, spirit and mind.
Hallmark moment? Nah.
They could never capture in print what was captured in pain - and then in joy.
Happy Valentines Day, every day, sweet Susan.