Valentine’s Day 2010

It’s different this year. I’m married.

We have some history, and our Valentine’s Day celebration allowed us to revisit some things.
A great meal at a favorite restaurant. Homemade cards. Great conversation.
And then he went to bed. The man is TIRED, I tell you! He works hard, seven days a week.
So I’m up, winding down the day, hanging with the kids. And thinking about love and Valentine’s Day. Interesting how the joy of a love that is grounded and secure widens a heart to love even more. I’m thinking about that.
And thinking about the male species. Valentine’s Day seems extraordinarily unfair to them, in some ways. Lots of expectations. My friend Scott wrote a great essay on that topic that you ought to read.
Anyway, thinking about guys. Watching my eldest son grow older and taller, listening to his voice deepen and marveling at what happens to boys as they turn into men. Watching him interact with a special girl who seems to have captured his attention. Thinking about how weird that is.
And thinking about my dad.
He was always my hero. He could fix anything (though my mom might argue about who actually did most of the home repairs). He rebuilt the engine of my first car, a ’67 Mustang (which I think, in retrospect, might have been more for him than me – but what a SWEET car!) He taught me how to do an oil change. He rolled his eyes when I called him from college – six hours away – because I had a flat tire and needed him to come help me. He talked to me about budgeting and relationships and music and sales and half the time I fought everything he told me.
Of course, now that I’m all grown up, I realize how incredibly wise he was.
He’s been a shoulder to cry on throughout the worst times of my life. He’s been a champion for my kids when they needed it most.
I love my dad. I get so caught up in the busyness of my life that I don’t take the time to tell him enough. But here’s what I know:
  • He loves me. I’ve never doubted my daddy’s love.
  • He loves my mom. They’re working on fifty years of marriage. Isn’t that amazing?
  • He loves God, and he loves his church.
  • He loves his family – all seven grandkids and everybody else.
By all rights, it’s a miracle that my dad is alive in 2010. Just a few years ago a rogue blood vessel burst in his brain. We lost him for a while, to the tubes and machines of the ICU.
But we got him back. He’s here, alive and kicking, rocking in his Papa chair, watching Antique Roadshow and keeping me updated on all the things that I need to know.
He still loves me.
And I love him.
Happy Valentine’s Day, Dad.