I sat outside of the grocery story around 5 p.m. this evening and chuckled at the line of men filing into the parking lot carrying last minute gifts. Some had flowers—the selection no doubt already picked through. Others carried half-delated balloons, or a heart-shaped box of chocolate in one hand and a frozen pizza in the other.
For all the talk about LOVE, it didn’t seem like much more than an afterthought or perhaps an “oh crap” moment during the drive between the office and home.
Perhaps it was a radio ad or flashing billboard that spurred them into action so as to not come home empty-handed. My guess is that most of them didn’t hop out of bed this morning with the intention of celebrating Valentine’s Day. But there they were, at the eleventh hour, giving it their best shot.
I admired them for trying. And I have to believe that’s enough.
We want the flowers and chocolate because we’ve been told that’s what love is. And those aren’t bad things, but they aren’t really important.
Maybe the most important thing in marriage is simply that we keep trying. Day after day. Even when it’s nothing but ordinary. Even when it’s not perfect. Even when we forget or fail. Even when it’s not fair.
Because nothing says love like a willingness to keep going after we realize that marriage is much harder than we anticipated. Most days are more work than romance.
My husband and I didn’t get each other anything today. So I guess we’re even. And I’m going to consider that to be enough.
And whatever love looked like for you today, let it be enough.
For the husbands who came home with discount flowers instead of an elaborate bouquet, let it be enough.
For the husbands who forgot, let the apology be enough.
For the husbands who are too cheap, er frugal, to splurge on flowers or chocolate, let the way they love you in other ways be enough.
And for the husbands who try day after day, the ones who keep waking up with us and continue to come home to us, the ones who keep loving us even when we aren’t all that lovable—let that be enough.
Because if you’re looking for roses and chocolate to fill up your love bucket, I’ll think you’ll be disappointed to discover that those things will never be enough.