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Valentine’s Day 2011 – What’s Love Got To Do With It?

February 13th, 2011 · 8 Brilliant Opinions · Random Things That Make Me Smile

A few years back I was having dinner with one of my girlfriends from high school.  I was venting about my marriage as she gave me the update on her new boyfriend.  Her love life seemed exciting and I seemed to be caught in the abyss of work, toddlers and marriage.   As my tirade escalated, she asked, ” So Ann-do you love him?”  “What’s love got to do with it?” was my angry retort.  I washed the bitterness down with a sip of wine.  She seemed hurt but managed to respond, “Love has everything to do with it.  You’re scaring me.”

Valentine’s Day is big business for retailers.  It is estimated that  Americans will spend between $13 billion and $16 billion  (men outspending women 2:1) for Valentine’s Day 2011. When I was single, I longed to have the dramatic overtures of a proper suitor on Valentine’s Day.  The more I stressed about it, the worse things got.  One boyfriend gave me a stun gun on Valentine’s Day.  (Lets do a group “WTF” for that one.)  My angst was palpable.  I remember one year my mother sent me roses.  God love her, I think she felt my pain.

Big P does not celebrate Christmas and thinks Halloween is “devil worship” but has a soft spot for Valentine’s Day.  So this year he asked me if I wanted my engagement ring “topped off.”  That’s ironworker talk for upgrading a diamond.  Now if you know me, you know I love diamonds. I haven’t met a diamond I didn’t like.   I felt like I was having an out of body experience when I heard myself say “No.”

My Rings

Disclosure – this is my second set of rings.  I lost my first set in the operating room.  I put them in the pocket of my scrubs (without the usual ritual of pinning them to my bra strap) and then tossed them – literally into the trash.  I cried for two days. I was inconsolable.  I had plans for those rings. I wanted to pass the rings down to my son (never mind he was only 3 years old at the time) so he could present them to his bride.

Now that I am married I have become more appreciative  of the daily acts of kindness and  affection I receive from my husband.  The drama of Valentine’s Day  (or a glitzy new diamond) can not and should not replace the every day simple acts of love and appreciation we express to a partner or spouse.  I love Big P because he makes my coffee every day without missing a beat.  He hides chocolate from the kids so we can share it together. He cleans my car.  He tries hard everyday to be a great friend.  He forgives me when I screw up.  No ring is gonna do that for me.

It’s taken me 40+ years to figure it out.  Love has everything to do with it.


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