Continued from A Week of Love
.......The years rolled by and with each coming year for a while a child was added to our brood, making money a little tight, time a little pressed and tensions a lot higher.
Valentine's Day became just another day. Grandma would always bring the little ones a red heart sucker. Promptly as the suckers were unwrapped the kids were placed in the bathtub to keep their sticky fingers off of the walls and furniture. They learned the routine and would bring me a sucker and start for the bathroom.
I guess they outgrew that.
I loved to get the children the conversation hearts.......pure sugar.
They never outgrew that.
The chocolate in heart shaped boxes started rolling in each year, usually bought by me and sometimes from a grandparent or two but were always shared by the whole family. It was not unusual to find a box of empty wrappers and crushed chocolates because someone liked only the ones with the nuts in them.
Flowers never came from a florist and back then I can not remember the store carrying flowers like they do now. If I received a flower it was picked from one of the blooming bushes in the fence rows. The first one I received graciously since I had never seen the bloom and it was a novel idea. It was a full length of a branch with many yellow brushy blooms and smelled sweet and as he gave it to me he said he thought of me as he passed by it on the tractor.
But in coming years when I began to hear the stories of all the good things the other husbands were doing for their wives I was resentful of a husband arriving empty handed late into the evening with just a little blooming stick from the fence row tucked in his pocket.
And it did not satisfy me.
It was difficult for me to recognize the sacrifices he had made of his time to keep us fed and clothed.
But I was young and had much to learn.
To be continued.