The Meaning of Roses

Close-up View of a Pink RoseAs I sit here on this snowy Eve of Valentine’s Day, I wanted to share with you my first Valentine’s Day with Steve. I was 14 years old and he was 16 years old. His parents let him cook me a candlelit dinner at their house & they went out for the evening (isn’t that crazy?! I would never leave my teenage son alone with his girlfriend! LOL). In any case, I remember EXACTLY what he made for me: spaghetti! He cooked me a spaghetti dinner and lit candles & everything. I knew then that I was in LOVE. My first love. Only God could know that was going to be the first of many Valentine’s Days we would have together. 19 to be exact. Not enough if you ask me.

One of the things I loved the most about Steve was how romantic he was. That Valentine’s Day was only the beginning. There were roses of every color, for every occasion for 19 years. They weren’t ordinary roses, though. For example, for our 5 year wedding anniversary, I received a bouquet of FIVE long stemmed roses with a card that said, “One rose for every year you’ve given me.”

Another time, he went to Michigan to visit his mother in Michigan for Mother’s Day while I was pregnant with our oldest child (we lived in Georgia). He had roses delivered to me for Mother’s Day with a card that said, “I can’t wait to meet you. Love, Cameron (the name of our baby).” It was a family joke that out of the three boys in his family, I got the romantic one!

For many Valentine’s Days after he died, I longed for the romance and flowers. I felt lonely and unloved. I had to learn how to love myself and my life. The life God gave me, not the life I had with Steve, because that one was gone. A big part of my healing was accepting that I couldn’t remake (even with a remarriage) the life I had with Steve.  Once I accepted my life as a widow with children, I could move on and start living again.

The older I’ve gotten and the more I’ve healed from losing , the less I care about days like Valentine’s Day at all. Everyday things like drinking a hot cup of coffee in front of the fire on an icy morning bring me so much pleasure and contentment. I know how short life really is and how quickly it can all change. I kissed him good bye for work and then he was gone. I will not spend another day, not even Valentine’s Day, missing what’s right in front of me. JOY. LIFE. LOVE. I know it can be gone in a second.62973

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kathy
    Feb 13, 2014 @ 21:57:00

    Thank you. I needed to read something like this. My first valentine is gone but our love created our 2 little Valentines William and Emerson. Chris’s heart is in them forever.

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    • Mary
      Feb 13, 2014 @ 22:10:21

      You’re most welcome, Kathy. As your littles grow, you will see more & more of Chris in them & it will be a continued blessing for you ❤

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  2. Patti Winn
    Feb 13, 2016 @ 20:54:36

    Thank you for sharing your story. It helped me get back on track. I have many things to be thankful for. My husband died suddenly, as well, 4 1/2 years ago. This is the first year I didn’t plan a full day of distraction for myself -thinking I’m much stronger now and I’ll be fine. And then out of the blue I have been a weepy mess today. He too was very romantic and always made Valentine’s Day over the top special. I miss him every day and pretty sure I always will.

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