Valentine's Day now is different than Valentine's Day past.
I love Valentine's Day. I love love. I love showing people that I care about them and taking a moment to ponder how thankful I am for the people in my life. The kids and I spend the days leading up to it making valentines for our friends, decorating the house, and making heart shaped cookies. I start my yearly fruitless search for a gift for Silas that will be as nice as his gift to me will be.The first Valentine's Day Silas and I were together we were long distance and he told me he loved me for the first time. I send him a mix cd. Thereafter, he has always gotten me a gift far better than whatever gift I gave him. And we go out for dinner, just the two of us, which we very rarely do.
Last Valentine's Day Silas initiated "Valentide" where he bought me a gift and an accompanying kindle book for every day of the week leading up to Valentine's Day!
This Valentine's Day has not been been like any Valentine's Day before. Silas has been so busy at work that he did not order me a present. The elaborate gift I ordered Silas appears to be lost in the mail, and most importantly, Zeke has been feverish and throwing up for 3 days. Silas took yesterday off to catch puke and wash 87 loads of laundry with me. He did the grocery shopping for me. Among the food for next week and the sick goodies (gatorade, ginger ale, saltines, a thermometer) were a dozen roses for me. A romantic Hollywood gesture in the middle of our really unpleasant reality.
This year we were given the gift of the opportunity to show sacrificial love to each other and our children through service and patience. We bickered some (it's hard not to when your child's vomit and diarrhea is all over yourself and the entire dining room) and we were sad for pouty, grumpy, Zeke. We also laughed a lot. Gideon has recently been talking about all the things he's going to do when he grows up, and it's hilarious. We watched Parks and Rec and laughed until we were laughing at each other laughing. We hovered over Miriam and smiled at her smiles.
Today was supposed to be kind of a date. We had hired a sitter and we were going house hunting with a rental agent so we can get out of corporate housing. It's actually super nice temp housing but we're sleeping on a queen bed and it's taking its toll. There's a reason we have a king sized bed. But we had to cancel the sitter due to barfy child and so I'm home while Silas is out, hopefully, securing housing for us. I trust him to pick out an apartment, just like he picked our first apartment when we got married and our first house in Seattle when I had given up in frustration.
Things change. Bleaching pukey towels and sheets is more desirable than all the chocolate in the world. Spending the day apart so that we can move into our own apartment as soon as possible is much better for us, at this point, than a romantic dinner out. And the fact that at the end of the day we still want to crawl into bed, exhausted, and fall asleep next to each other, even in a queen bed, is better than anything that comes in a little blue box.