I knew it would be hard. I prepared for it- made plans to keep busy and serve others, but it was still hard to hear and see the Valentine greetings of others who had spouses or partners who would be available for sweet moments later on. Lets face it, going home to my sweet little dog just isn't the same. The bottom line is, I miss Robert, something fierce.
Now you understand that I have spent Valentines Day alone before. My divorce was finalized on Valentines Day years ago. (Its the Lord's way with me- He knows I have a sense of humor). There are those who would say, "go find someone to be with on Valentines Day," but that is not me. It can't be just anyone, and I'm stubborn besides (a Zehrbach trait if ever there was one), I just want MY own sweetheart.
So my day began with a more earnest than usual prayer, but, as I have learned I did not ask for things, I gave thanks. Thanks for a beloved companion who loved me in a way I had never understood possible. And for temple covenants, that bind is together eternally, and make possible a glorious reunion. Thanks for my Savior, who sacrificed all to provide an infinite atonement, by whose power and grace all things are possible. Thanks for sweet friends and family, who are here on earth and who bring Joy to my life. Thanks for my understanding of the Gospel plan, which gives me hope and peace. And finally, thanks for the opportunity to offer some kind of service and love to another this day, and lift them as Robert would have, so that I might feel closer to him.
"Savior, Redeemer of my Soul,
Whose mighty hand hath made me whole,
Who'se wondrous power hath raised me up
and filled with sweet my bitter cup.
What tongue my gratitude can tell,
O Gracious God of Israel."
So that was my prayer as I left the house that morning. And as I did, I noticed that the gratitude in my heart made me smile. I began to feel happier, less alone. I discovered that I was still a bit jealous of others with their sweethearts,but the good feelings returned as soon as I sent valentine wishes to ALL my children (and some spouses), and that kept things moving along.
Sure, there were still tough moments...like a text message from a friend saying, "we're sure Robert is nearby" - and really, that was still a sort of happy sad moment. But by the end of the day, I felt so peaceful and happy, even those things didn't make me cry. As day drew to a close, I looked back, trying to learn from the experience. The more I thought of others, the better I felt. The more I gave thanks for the blessings I had, even blessings that came as a result of hard things, the more aware I became of the needs of others, and as I tried to serve others, the more I felt Heavenly Father's love. Thinking of Robert and our beautiful life together only made me smile. I know we will be together again. This short time apart will feel like nothing then. But what I DO in this short time apart- that will make all the difference in how we do feel then.
"O'errule mine acts to serve thine ends.
Change frowning foes to smiling friends.
Chasten my soul till I shall be
In perfect harmony with thee.
Make me more worthy of thy love
And fit me for the life above."
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