It all started in Seattle.

I like Valentines day.  Always have, probably always will.  When I was single it meant a girls night with my best friends, when I was little it meant coming up with ideas for an awesome Valentines mailbox (it was always the boom box) and valentines for all my classmates.  As a married woman and mother of 2 it means a little gift for my boys, hott date night with the husband, flowers for sure, a sweet card always and a special night planned out by Dane.  This Valentines we’ll celebrate 5 years together…

The day was February 13th.  We stayed on the phone for hours that night, laughing and talking (obnoxiously loud…my poor roomate).  After 3 1/2 years, that was the night we stepped out of the friend zone and into something new and exciting. We dated for a year and a half.  We started our relationship long distance and spent countless hours on the phone, many times well into the morning.  Dane moved to Seattle to date me.  Our first kiss was in the Seattle airport.  We spent all of our free time together, sometimes just the two of us, other times with friends, and often with family.  Every night was date night.  We spent our days earning money and our nights spending it… together. Dinners, presents, treats, movies and our favorite, the last minute road trip.  Sunday afternoons were spent walking green lake, or driving through the hilly streets of Queen Ann, finding our future house in Magnolia, or going on walks through our favorite parks. One morning I woke up early and drove 20 minutes out of my way to Dane’s house, so that I could give him a kiss before we both headed off to work.  We were so in love.

After almost 4 years of marriage, we’re even more in love today, but it certainly looks different.  We’ve traded in late nights on the phone, for all nighters with our babies.  Sunday afternoons are spent wrestling with our boys, or reading them books…doing anything we can to keep them from having a total melt down due to no naps. After a long day of work, we don’t head out to a fancy restaurant.  Dane plays with the boys, while I cook us a meal.  Instead of parting ways at the end of a long night out, we end our nights early and cuddle up in bed.  Goodbye kisses aren’t needed anymore…just goodnight I love you’s.

Our relationship has grown and changed so much over the last 8 1/2 years of friendship, 5 years of being in love and 3 1/2 years of marriage.  When you marry the right person, it really does get better and better.  For the most part Dane and I have traded in all the excitement and newness that comes with dating for the first time, with contentment and consistency and that’s just the way it should be.

But every now and then we have these opportunities to fall in love all over again.  This week Dane had Lasik eye surgery, only the kind he got (PRK) is known for being a really difficult and painful recovery.  He took the week off work and for the first few days was fairly helpless, as he was blind, drugged up and in a lot of pain.  Seeing my husband (typically my rock) in such a helpless state, I really stepped up my wife game.  I cared for him, like I never have before.  I took care of his every little need, set alarms all throughout the night, so that he didn’t miss a a dose of medicine, and offered him help as often as I could.  I did this all happily too, it just felt good to serve him. Dane was so touched by my attitude and willingness to help that he showered me with praise and love, and hugs all week.  He never once got grumpy with me, even though he was in so much discomfort.  In what could of been a really awful week, we’ve ended it feeling crazy in love and so appreciative of one another.

I made a comment to Dane,

I always love you this much, but I really need to show you this much.

He agreed that he needed to do the same, because it felt so good to serve and love each other in such a selfless way.

Serve the one you love.

It’s such an obvious principle, yet so easy to forget.  I need to remember that I married a good man, which means that when I put him first, above myself, he will do the same for me.

So, my advice for a HOTT Valentines?  Serve each other…and do it with a smile.  Who knew service was so hott, right?

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