My Valentine's Day Was Complete by 8:00 a.m.

I wish there was a way for me to put my facebook status on here, without having to white out all the names...

Because it went like this:

7:23 a.m., 2/14/2012

"Yes dear?"
"You know how you asked me if I needed Valentines for my class?"
"Yes, and you said no, no Valentines for class."
"Yeah well I guess I need Valentines."

And then I made a comment about "what time does Target open?"  And of course wrapped up with HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY.

What I didn't write, was this:

So I'm leaving for Target at 7:43 a.m. William, the child featured in the above status update, is insisting that he tag along.  "No!" I yelped.  "I'm sure you have some homework to do!" (since he is the KING of the 'forgotten assignment suddenly remembered 10 minutes before the bus comes').  But the boy persisted.  My will is weak at that hour of the 'morn, so off we went.

As we waited by the front door of Target, me in my dog-hair covered 'yoga' pants, the two women next to us wearing sexy "Julianna Margulies in The Good Wife"-ish pantsuits and high heel boots, a thought occurred to me.  No, not "Maybe I should have brushed my teeth" although that would have been nice.  It was, "Gee...I remember William telling me about a girl he likes in his class."  Actually, it went a little something like this...(cue Garth and Wayne waving their fingers in the air to segue into a flashback sequence):

One day, I was down in the mancave bedroom putting clothes away (that happens sometimes!  I swear we don't always pull clothes out of the baskets when we get dressed in the mornings...).  William was kind of lingering about in the background.  I asked him if he wanted to help, but I don't think he heard me.  Instead, he said, "Hey mom."  I answered, "Yes my dear boy." (or maybe it was "WHAT??").  He continued:  "If I had a girlfriend, would you want to know?".  Ok, for context, I will interject here that William is my baby.  He's 11 years old.  So far, in my parenting career, I have had the subject of boyfriend/girlfriends come up exactly ZERO times.  This was new territory for me.  I decided to tread lightly.  Or as lightly as I can.

"Oh William!!  YES!  For sure I'd want to know!!  WHO?  Who is it?" 

My kids might tell you having their mom work at the school they attend is "cool" or sometimes "alright" but usually it's "embarrassing" and sometimes even downright "nightmarish".  But it's true, I know EVERYONE they go to school with (at least when they're in elementary school.  After that, I know about 70% of their classmates.  Which is still good, I think.).  So naturally, I couldn't wait to hear who it was.  I had a couple of ideas...

I finally got it out of him and then spent the next few minutes picturing them in their 20's, getting married and giving me tall, skinny grandchildren.  Then I snapped out of it and finished putting the laundry away.

But I kept my eyes open, believe me.  And I have figured out that when a 6th grader has a boyfriend or girlfriend, what it basically means is that you look at each other every once in a while on the playground, while clumped into your little group of hens or roosters.  Sometimes a hen and a rooster will branch off and talk or kick each other, or one of their friends will go grab the hat off of one or the other, but that's pretty much it.  So I know it's all innocent and sweet. 

(and now Wayne and Garth are doing it again, segueing back into present-day)

So as we're booking it towards the Valentine's Day section of Target, I casually mentioned to William:  "Maybe you want to get a little something special for XXXX?" (her name isn't really XXXX but I do have to show some restraint here).  He turned crimson and said, "Duh mom.  That's why I wanted to come with you."

Can a woman with fuzzy teeth, wearing black pants that look light yellow due to the volume of dog hair matted on them, racewalking down the main aisle of Target actually feel her heart melting?

Yes.  Yes she can.  And it melted some more as I watched my baby, my sweet William, trying his 11-year-old-hardest to pick out the perfect gift for his girlfriend.  And yes, that was me, maybe or maybe not weeping a little when he picked out a Dove long-stemmed chocolate rose.  And it was me, again, sighing a little bit of relief when he put the rose back and picked out a little teddy bear wearing a heart sweater instead (no need to get too serious, ya know). 

So we grabbed the couple of bags of candy, the teddy bear and a special little card just for XXXX, checked out and went home. 

William got to work on the math sheet he had totally forgotten about, I wrapped the teddy bear in pink tissue and put it in a very non-Valentine's Day looking bag for him, and deposited both that and the bags of candy into his backpack. 

And now, I sit here, and I am still aglow over what transpired this morning.  Valentine's Day can suck.  It can suck not only for singles like me, but I know from experience it can suck even when you've got a ring on your finger and a non-expired marriage certificate.  But...it can also be very sweet. 

I'd be a big fat liar if I said that having a significant other wouldn't be kind of nice on this day, that making reservations for an intimate dinner wouldn't be exciting, that picking out some Valentine's lingerie (or at least something that doesn't look like prison-issued underwear) wouldn't get the old romance coals all glowy.  Yes, as nice as that stuff would be, it's still ok to be FINE with being alone.  It's still ok to NOT GIVE A HOOT about being single on Valentine's Day. 

But today, my son gave me a little glimpse into Valentine's Day, as seen through fresh eyes.

I saw, for a minute, how Valentine's Day looks when seen for the first time by someone who is just beginning to tread the waters in The Sea of Love.  For someone just starting to notice those little butterflies, that "funny feeling" you get when someone you like walks into the room.  

And it made me forget about broken hearts, broken promises, and spending the two weeks leading up to this day grimacing over Hallmark and Kay Jewelers commercials...it made me forget about being ok with my singleness.

It made me love this day.  And that made my day complete by 8:00 a.m. 

Thank you William ♥


  1. Replies
    1. Aww thanks Alex. Who knew a trip to Target would mean so much? Happy V-day to you my friend.

  2. Ha ha and I was driving 30 minutes each way at 1 am so S could leave little gifts for his Valentine. He bought her 3 roses,a Starbucks gift card, M & M's and made 12 duct tape roses. Plus a hand written note that I would die to read!!!


    1. Duct tape roses? PLEASE tell me there are pictures? How can our babies be old enough to like girls, Wesley??? HOW???? And 30 minutes each way? Mother of The Year sash and tiara are on their way. Love you Wesley!

    2. What?? Your firstborn has a girlfriend??? Nooooo....He's still 10! (right??)

  3. First things first: we pretty much live out of clothes still in the laundry baskets. The kids, at least- Charlie and I are slightly more civilized.
    I can envision William blushing from behind his bangs when he gives his lady the gift. He's a sweet sweet boy, that one!

  4. Aw, that's one of the sweetest things. New love...isn't it great?

  5. Very sweet. Gave me perspective. Thank you


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