My Valentine

I have movie clip like memories that play through my mind on random occasion.  Some of those memories are amusing to my mind, like when my brother, Jon and I use to catch frogs out of our pool in the off season; I’ll spare you the detail of what we did with them after that.  Some are sad, like when I fell on the gravel road trying to catch up with my family on an afternoon walk after picking a pear off my Grandma’s tree.  It was my first time for stitches.  Others are exciting like when my Aunt Donna visited with her brand new little bitty lhasa apso puppy named, Precious.  Some are fun, like when my cousins, and Jon and I, danced in our grandma’s garage to “Heaven is a Place on Earth,” by Belinda Carlisle.  Then there are those tragic memories, the vision of flames from lying in a burning ditch; followed by the heartbreaking memory of when my Mom and Dad sat beside my hospital bed trying to explain that my brother was dead. There is an array of different genres from these movie clip like memories.  But in light of the recent celebration of Valentine’s Day, I’d like to share some of my favorite with you.  These memories fall into the romantic films category, and it couldn’t be a sweeter story if it came right out of a fairytale.

My husband and I met in August of 1996.  We were introduced to one another at a Driller’s baseball game that hot summer night in Tulsa.  Neither one of us took much interest in one another.  I think it took some time for us to even realize we were being set up by our friends.  We were polite and friendly, but nothing that would classify as love at first sight.  As disinterested as we both recall feeling, it’s quite funny that we still remember how we both looked that night.

Once we officially had met, we then noticed each other more at school.  I was a junior and he was a senior.  I remember sitting in French class one morning and the door was opened to our classroom.   Brandon passed by, then backed up, and waved at me from the hall.  I wasn’t completely sure if he was waving at me or someone else, so I just smiled.  As soon as he walked away, I turned to the girls behind and to both sides of me, and asked if they had waved at “that person” in the hall.  Neither of them had any idea what I was talking about, so I just said, “never mind,” and turned around in my seat feeling on top of the world.

Our friends began to tease us because we started spending a lot of time together, but refused to admit that we were dating.  We told everyone that we were simply spending our extra time together.  Funny how much “extra” time we seemed to all of a sudden have.  We went bowling, to concerts, to the movies and even went fishing.  I think I realized I must have felt something for this guy when he asked me if I liked hockey, and I heard myself say, “I love hockey.”  In honor of the 90s, “whatever!”  He knew me better than I thought because we never went!

I remember the bear he gave me when I had surgery to have my wisdom teeth removed.  I remember how I felt like my heart literally moved when I’d answer the phone and hear his voice on the line.  I remember how we would laugh together; how everyone thought he was so quiet but I got to see his humor and wit.  And many months later, I remember that unforgettable moment, our first kiss.

One of my most treasured possessions is our wedding invitation that one of my husband’s aunts had framed for us as a wedding gift.  It says, “a glance; a smile; became a friendship; grew into love.”   My husband gave me the greatest gift of his friendship and God gave us the greater gift of love.  With all of my being I had asked the Lord to send me someone that would see me as HE saw me, because I Samuel 16:7 says, “The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

I was a seven year old little girl when I looked in the mirror and saw what people looked at; my scars.  I grieved then for what I thought I may never have; someone to love me and cherish me and honor me.  I feared I would never walk down that aisle in a beautiful white gown to a handsome groom.  I contemplated the possibility that I may have to settle for companionship rather than wait for passion.

But my memories are the most romantic I could have ever dreamed.  I have a love to call my own.  I have a Valentine who does not look at the things people look at; no, he looks at the things my Father looks at; the heart.  And that is the kind of man, who will always hold mine.

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