Love is in the air and all around us. Of course it is – tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. Or the day some women get to shove it in other’s faces that their guys are more romantic than theirs.
I have lamented that I am not a romantic at heart; I yearn to be, would love to get caught up in the hoopla; maybe it’s because I have never been the object of affection that would be in a romantic comedy.
I would be cast in the Rosie O’Donnell role not Meg Ryan or Sandra Bullock.
So maybe that is why I would rather hide on Feb. 14 than to see everyone posting their flowers, jewelry and big heart shaped boxes of candy they receive on Facebook.
That’s the only good thing about Valentine’s Day – the candy, and right now, I can’t even think of any particular candy that makes this day special except those little candy hearts and I am not too fond of them because you get a hold of a bad one and it can nearly break an incisor.
My child loves Valentine’s Day though. How did this happen? Because this child is all about love.
“Mama, make sure you get the good Valentine’s,” he will tell me when he hands me the class list.
“Get two boxes maybe. I want to make sure there’s cards that are appropriate for all the girls.”
He worries that all the girls have cards that are nice. He doesn’t want anyone to be left out and wants them all to feel equally like princesses. I nod, dreading having to venture down the heart bedecked aisles at the store.
But Cole is all about Valentine’s Day. He loves giving the cards, seeing the smiles and sharing candy with his friends. He saves his cards from Valentine’s past, knowing who gave him what and wanting to cherish it forever.
He is a romantic at heart, with a sense of chivalry that died years ago, opening doors, pulling out chairs.
“Ladies first,” he will say, with a sweep of his arm as he ushers me in to a restaurant.
Granted, he’s been taught to be a gentleman, but he takes great pride in it.
He’s got a love for love and making everyone feel special. Even as I sit in the recliner, with my hair in a ponytail, wearing sweats, an Alabama hoodie, and no makeup, my child will look at me and say sincerely, “I have the prettiest Mama in the whole wide world.”
Only two people can think you are pretty when you at your unprettiest – one’s your own mama and the other’s your child, who loves his mama.
“I don’t know where he gets it from,” I tell Mama, commenting on how my son tries to make everyone feel so loved and cherished.
“He’s just a romantic at heart and he is all about Valentine’s Day.”
“Maybe he takes after his father?” Mama muses, suppressing a giggle.
Dirty pool, old gal, I think to myself.
She knows darn well that man is in the running for worst Valentine gift giver ever.
I am actually surprised he hasn’t done something like made the handmade coupons for foot rubs or doing the dishes and thought it was original.
I think the only reason Lamar hasn’t done that is he would have to get the construction paper, stapler and markers out of my office – a dead giveaway as to what he was doing.
“Don’t you love Valentine’s Day?” Cole asked, looking through a bag of Valentine’s candy for one more chocolate.
“If you do,” I reply.
How do you crush the Valentine spirit of someone who’s so in love with the day celebrating love?
“I do. But you should tell people you love them every day, not just on Valentine’s Day,” he said, sincerely. “It’s important that people know they are loved and important every day. Don’t you think so, Mama?”
I agreed. Such a sweet, tender little heart, I thought.
Later that evening, after homework and dinner, baths and everything done, I went in my office to shut everything down. On my keyboard was a folded piece of paper, with a gigantic heart on the front fold.
I smiled, picking it up to read as a chocolate heart fell out.
“YOU are my heart,” the magic marker handwriting proclaimed. “And will always be my best girl.”
And that handmade note, full of love and the last chocolate, was far better than anything from Hallmark.