I should not be so cynical about Valentine’s Day. In fact, I got a lacy, beautiful and perfect Valentine from none other than God.
I was in love with a fella’ who wasn’t in love with me. Valentine’s Day came with the usual feelings of failure and confusion. At about 1 pm I decided to take my white Husky/Wolf, Ariel, for a hike up in the Laguna Mountains. We reached the trail head and, the moment we did, it began to snow, the particular gentle, wet and lacy flakes of a Southern California snow shower. The loop we hiked was three miles. It went across a small forest of Jeffrey Pine, up some rocky hills, down through more pines, up a wonderful outcropping to a pond. From the pond we returned across a meadow and then we reached the truck.
It snowed the whole time, dream snow, perfect snow, white, gentle, sweet and ALL MINE. No one else was there — and, at the moment we returned to the trail head where we’d begun, the Valentine snow shower stopped.
In spite of having no particular religion — and not liking religion much — I really love God. I don’t actually know why and don’t think I have to. It’s things like that, small miracles in nature that appear just for me, just because I go out there where I’m more likely to see God trying to communicate.
I’ve had a couple of other amazing Valentines, too. One miserable day I got home from school (back when I lived in San Diego). It’d been an awful day. Frustrating, annoying, disputative, bleah. I drove up to my house disgusted with things, life and people and saw my porch was covered with red and pink flowers. Someone (I had a good idea who) had stripped every geranium, every hibiscus, even the thorny bougainvillea to do that. I was enchanted. I melted. I stepped over it and went inside. Soon there was a knock on my door, at about the height a 6 year old could reach. I knew who it was. Danny, a little boy being foster-momed by my wonderful neighbor. Danny was different; he liked his foster sister’s clothing and played with Barbies. His foster mom made no fuss over that, just left him to be himself. I opened the door and there he stood wearing pop-beads, carrying a purse and wearing lipstick. He’d been sent over to apologize. His head hung in shame. I said, “Did you do this, Danny?”
“Yes. I’m sorry.”
“Sorry? I LOVE it. You made me so happy!”
“Yeah. It’s beautiful. I had a bad day but you made it all better!”
He climbed up on my lap and hugged me, then jumped down and danced around the yard, his purse flapping, singing, “I did it! I did it! I did it!”
Valentines are everywhere, actually. I just got one. I was outside with the horse and the little boy next door who’s almost four. When I said I had to go in, he said, “I need to give you some water, Martha!” I told him I was OK, I didn’t need any water (he’s learned to keep the horse watered).
“OK,” he said. “I love you, Martha!”
So, what card could possibly equal any of these Valentines!