In February of 1974, my future-husband gave me a Valentine for the first time. It was the size of a poster and featured Peanuts characters. On the inside, Snoopy popped up and danced on a little spring. The caption read, “Since we met, my feet have never touched the ground.”
We had been engaged less than three months and would marry in May. I had just turned 18.
I was a senior in high school and still active in the Future Homemakers of America, where we vowed to, “Face the future with warm courage and high hopes.” Mine were sky high, so that Snoopy card felt appropriate.
As one might imagine, the next 47 years brought lots of opportunities for our feet to touch the ground.
And yet, every day of those years, we have both gotten out of bed with the same vow: To face the future with courage and hope. To honor and cherish. To have and to hold. To decide again, every day, to love and be loved.
It hasn’t been easy nor always fun. But it has always been worth the effort. The Snoopy card went the way of a cleaning spree decades ago, but I can still see it in my mind. It is my second-favorite sentiment from my man. My favorite came in the way of a text message a few years ago when I was driving to town for the dreaded chore of buying new pants. I think it sums up our attitude about love and marriage better than anything Hallmark has ever produced. It said:
“When you are shopping for clothes today, keep in mind when you look in the mirror, you are looking at the woman I love.”
Those words fluttered my heart like poetry. Maybe the impact can only be fully understood by women-of-a-certain age who have born children, eaten carbs, surrendered to gray hair, and stopped counting wrinkles. But, it was magic.
So, if you are looking for love this Valentine’s Day, look for a man like mine. He’s a keeper.