Friday, February 6, 2009

Valentine's Day -- What's Love Got to Do With It?

Next week is Valentine’s Day. I’m not a fan.

What matters to me is how my husband treats me 365 days a year.

I would rather have a husband who vaccuums without complaint, not one who brings home a dozen roses.

I would rather have a husband who scratches my back anytime I want and for as long as I need it, not one who brings me chocolates.

I would rather have a husband who invites me for lunch on a random Tuesday just because he misses me, not one who “must” spring for a fancy dinner “because it’s Valentine’s Day.”

Come to think of it, I would rather have a husband who will go out for Mexican again even though he wants steak, “because I want you to be able to find something to eat so you can enjoy your meal, too.” (Mexican can be very vegan friendly versus the paltry offerings at most steak houses!)

I look at young couples who are “so much in love” when they get married. Then they hit their first rocky patch or have their first major fight, and they’re so shocked. They figure they must have made a mistake and start looking for a way out of the marriage. Ha! We didn't have any unrealistic attitudes about marriage. No "romantic" thoughts of it at all. In fact, one of the things I told my husband on our first date is, “You seem like someone I can fight with.” And we do fight sometimes. But I never have to worry that we’re skidding on the rocks. I don’t have to worry that he’ll leave because it’s difficult . . . because I’M difficult. I don’t have to worry he doesn’t love me, just because he may not like me right then. Because one of the first things my husband told me when we were dating is, “Marriage is hard. It’s not perfect. You take the bad with the good – and a lot of times there’s more bad than good. Marriage is a lot of work. Anything worthwhile is hard work.” And the best part is, even when we’re in the middle of a fight, if he speaks to a family member or friend, he’ll tell them I’m “wonderful” because he doesn’t want them thinking badly of me. One time he said to me, “I’m so happy we’re married, even when I’m angry enough to kill you.” A sense of humor makes all the difference in the world!

The grand gestures a couple of times a year don’t really matter. What matters are the small, every day gestures. Last night is a perfect case in point. My husband works very, very hard and he’s TIRED. He sleeps soundly at night and is almost “stumbling drunk” when awakened in the middle of the night. Last night I happened to be awake when he woke up to go to the bathroom about 3:00 a.m. As he crossed the bedroom, he encountered one of our Persians. I heard him say, “Hi Anna” and he bent down to pet her before continuing on to the bathroom. If you want to know the heart of a man, spy on him in the middle of the night when he’s tired and doesn’t know you’re watching!

So you can keep Valentine’s Day. We’ll just treat it like any other day.

BUT, in honor of Valentine’s Day, next week I will have a number of books to review and give away concerning relationships. So make sure you check in to read about them and enter to win!

Also, remember to head over to today where I am the “guest chef”. Check the reduce footrpints blog often for helpful, entertaining, informative tips about how to walk softly on this fragile earth and leave only light footprints behind!


  1. This is such a lovely post and a wonderful testament to real commitment and the joys thereof! And ... this was a beautiful tribute to your husband!

    On another subject ... I wanted to say "thanks again" for the recipe on Reduce Footprints. I've posted a link to it on a few forums ... I've stumbled it ... and I've copied the recipe (with your name) to a forum that doesn't allow links but ... hopefully they'll be smart enough to find you.

    Have a great weekend!

    Small Footprints

  2. Hi Connie. I had no idea you switched your platform to blogger but the new look is great. The article about your husband was truly touching and warm. I miss seeing you and am glad to hear you're coming out if your depression.