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Joy’s Reflections: Valentine’s Day is only a month away, but love is more than roses and heart-shaped boxes of candy.

Joy McClain

January 5, 2019

2 Min Read
hands holding snow hearts
MORE THAN FANCY FLOWERS: The little things your spouse does during the 364 days of the year that aren’t Valentine’s Day really describe love and dedication. timonko/Getty Images)

My husband and I have seen our fair share of “dinners out” and Valentine’s Day gifts and cards. We’ve done the romantic. To be honest, the ordinary day in and day out is what moves me.

It’s easy to spend a little money on someone for a few hours, but scoop your wife’s pony’s poo out of the stall so she doesn’t have to — that symbolizes love to me. Love looks like warming up the car and scraping the windows or making the coffee every morning … or giving her a dose of medicine with a spoon when she’s sick in bed.

Roses in February are nice, but it means a whole lot more when he’s out there tilling the vegetable and flower garden in the hot sun. I’m always game for a steak dinner that I don’t have to cook, but those Friday nights when he just slips a frozen pizza in the oven are greatly appreciated. Over the past three decades, I’ve cooked my share of meals that weren’t so tasty, but I can’t remember any he complained about or refused to eat.

He claims goats are the most annoying creatures God ever created, but he’s the one doing all the disbudding and castrating in the spring. I’ve seen him chase a chicken or two too, and not because it was time for butchering but because he was putting them in the coop, knowing his crazy wife would lie awake all night if they weren’t at least locked up.

He’s loaded a whole lot of feed in his truck and hauled a whole lot of animals to the fair when there were so many other places where the money could go and the time could be spent.

True love
Recently, one of the grandkids gifted us with a nasty stomach flu. I don’t know when we were both so sick at the same time. I was in bed, barely able to raise my head, and he was on the couch, feeling just as bad. By the next day, we at least could eat something.

So, we sat, propped up in our bed, both of us in great need of a shower and looking quite unromantic. We clanked our spoons together, citing, “Cheers,” and then ate our strawberry Jell-O cups.

Yup, I was moved by the moment because I thought to myself, “This is love, this is commitment and what it’s all about.” It’s being together, weathering the storms and life, and choosing to stick it out.

Keep your expensive Valentine’s Day dinners, gifts and flowers; I’ll take my Mr. Steady for the remaining 364 days of the year. Not that he won’t find ways to romance his bride, because he does.

It’s just that we’ve discovered that having a happy marriage means choosing to do so and be so. It means showing up even when your spouse is sick or needs a shower — or a little help shoveling the poo.

McClain writes from Greenwood, Ind.

About the Author(s)

Joy McClain

Joy McClain writes from Greenwood, Ind.

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