Sunday, February 15, 2015

One year I got new closet doors for Valentines Day

I got a borderline migraine headache with a side of dizzying vertigo at work last week which is really one of the only times I don't like my job.  Hard to be active and look like I'm not in pain when I'm really in pain.  And a friend told me I got the migraine because of my age.  Those were her words, complete with eye contact and all seriousness in her voice.  Proof that life marches on and walks all over our bodies along the way. 

And kid 2 called from the bus stop feeling awful and as white as I wish my sheets could be.  And I thought he was really sick.  But it turns out he must've taken a giant growth spurt sometime between lunch and 4pm because he was just hungry and possibly to the point of a low blood sugar crisis.  Dallas ISD has the greatest lunch and breakfast program where every student in the district - no matter who or what or where - gets free meals at school.  But they appear to be meals for people who are dieting, and not meals for growing teenage boys.  So we told him to make sure he eats every last bite of the lunch the school feeds him and to ask all the other kids around him if he can finish theirs. 

And kid 3 and I finished up the last of the Valentine party preparations ... for the last elementary school Valentine party for a Walters.  Which is really fine with me because I totally hate assembling Valentine cards and filling tons of little bags with candy.  And at the parties it's kinda like a race to the finish to see who can eat the most junk in a 30 minute time frame.  

And today kids 1 and 2 had a Valentine dance at school but I haven't gotten the scoop on that yet.  Maybe they'll fall in love with lovely, responsible girls who will encourage both emotional and spiritual growth and improved performance in important life endeavors.  Oh how I make myself laugh.  Or maybe they'll come home and say the dance was lame like they did last time and then plop down on the couch to play XBOX.

I've actually never been a big lover of Valentines Day.  Because I would much rather be loved every day of the year instead of concentrating it all into one.  I think I've got the right idea on this one.  

Husband asked me as we walked the aisles of the grocery store one exciting Friday night, following our upscale dinner at Subway, ... what I would've been doing on a Friday night when I was about 22 ? .... 

And I told him, .... maybe walking the aisles of the grocery store.  Probably with Mr. Wonderful for the moment, pretending that we were a family.  Which, as it turns out, seems to be what I always wanted.   

One year I got new closet doors for Valentines Day.  Have I told y'all that before?  We were fixing up our first house and we desperately needed them.  And to me nothing says love more than a pretty closet door.  And digging a little deeper into that rationale... love speaks to me through a home to call our own, a place to feel all at once welcomed, accepted and comfortable.  A place that shuts out the worst and invites in the best.  So to me, good food and a pretty place for the soul is my love language to my family. 

But I wonder often if I'm setting a good example of love for my kids.   Specifically, how to love.  How to show love.  I wonder if I'm doing enough.  Or if I'm doing things right.  

Do they see in me, in us, a loving family?  Do they see that love means more than words and more than a card with a heart on it?  Do they see that love means more than that first rush of emotion that comes when a relationship is all new?  Do they see in our family,.... commitment, persistence, endurance, patience, do-overs and second chances?  Do they feel joy in this place?  

I don't know.  Because it turns out that I'm still learning what love is.  I grew up in a home where I think at one point there had to be love.  But it wasn't loud or big, and it wasn't spoken a lot.  So I grew up a little bit naive ignorant of healthy relationships.  Oh, I had plenty of chances to practice them, healthy or not.  And I had fun and good and youthful kinds of love that everyone should be lucky enough to have.

But as much as I hate to share this and say it out loud...I grew up in a family where I never knew that love was expected for me.  I never knew if love was hoped or wanted for me.  And I especially never knew that I could want it for myself.  And that's hard for me to say.  Because saying something out loud for all the world to hear makes it real.  

I never played wedding.  I never had Barbie in love with Ken.  In fact I don't think Ken lived at my house.  I never heard about how little girls grow up to find good men and become wives and mothers.  I never looked at rings or dresses in magazines and I never once had a discussion with anyone in my family of me one day getting married.  I was never told that one day my prince would come and that I could have a day to celebrate a future of promise.  But I never knew any better.  And I never knew it was weird.  Now I think it might have been. 

Embarrassing story alert..... 

One time when I was in college I knew this older girl who was always hanging around with the same fella.  And I seriously thought he was her brother.  Her brother, people.   And once she and I were at the airport at the same time, saying goodbye to some folks... me to my Mr. Love-o-the-Moment, her to her brother ?  Whom she was kissing rather intently at the departure gate.   And the embarrassing part is that I actually called him her brother and went on and on about how close they were.... (do y'all get it?  Oh my goodness... Do you see my awkward weirdness and sad misconception of relationships?  He wasn't her brother, y'all...and I was given further proof that I was oddly out of place in the adult world of love)

So I talk to my boys about life and love and hopes for them finding a sweet girls to love and marry.  And they roll their eyes like I have said the most embarrassing thing a mom could ever say.  But I try to give a little love lesson every now and then as I learn along with them.  And when all else fails, bring in husband to do the teaching.  

A remedial love course for me.  A beginning love course for them.  

Speaking of love..... I would love for y'all to get every post.  See the little Heart icon over on the right side of the page?  That's Bloglovin... and they will send every post to your inbox.  For the low low price of FREE!  Or you can follow by email and there's a little box over there, too, for you to fill out for that.  

I love that you are keeping me company here on the blog.  Thank you a million heart shaped boxes of candy for that! 

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