I do not think anyone who knows me will disagree when I say I am a romantic. I think perhaps it is intertwined with my irrational optimism. How much of seeing beauty, hope, and miracles in all things everyday is from romance and how much from optimism?
It’s probably a question that is in the same realm as 'How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie pop?' The world may never know.
Today is Valentines Day. A day set aside each year for Hope and Love and Romance. A rather delicate holiday in my mind. A day to declare Love or Redeclare. A day where actions speak louder then any bauble, but then again I am usually one for action over material no mater the holiday. To me the gift declaring your love is spoken most clearly in the thought that was put into the gift: the gift itself being the word and the action the intensity and inflection of the word. Perhaps that is why I insist that the kids make their valentines rather then settling for the expressionless scraps of paper that are the common staple.
One year we drove to a beautiful spot in the mountains as a family and had a picnic then wandered enjoying the area. That may not sound big, but the fact is for My Love it was. It was to a place he had never been before and being in the mountains the weather is rather unpredictable coupled with his feelings on our cars and their reliability it was quite a huge gift! He kept asking me if I was enjoying it with such a burning desire to see me happy in his voice and eyes that it really touched me.
This year I must say I was rather not expecting a very intense gift. For you may recall that in November I told him all I wanted was a bouquet of flowers that had a secret message of love in the Language of Flowers. You may also recall I had a particularly unhappy day were I reminded him of this and was met with a vacant gaze.
I was expecting the stand by roses and chocolate: not that I would complain, for those are special in their own right, but it would have been as intense as Hershey’s milk chocolate when you long for Ghirardelli’s dark chocolate, enjoyable in it’s own right but not the same.
Imagine my interest when he packed me off to get my present this morning. Not only had he planed a bouquet to speak to me in secret songs of love, he had a back up plan if the garden centers and floral shops failed to match his desires.
Just driving on this quest was enough for me. I may be romantic, but apparently I am easy too.
We went to the best garden center in town. His carefully written list of what he sought clutch against the whipping wind as we strode from car to door. Of course he held the door for me. He really had no idea what he was looking for. Though he had seen pictures of the plants he was looking for he couldn’t even pronounce them and garden centers are as alien to him as a football stadium is to me. He did not want me to know what we were looking for (making it rather difficult to help) so we walked and looked at what was there.
Rather spare at first glance, but I recognized that much of the empty looking pots of dirt held tiny plants. Most look freshly potted, which an attendant confirmed when I bullied him into asking for help. We saw several statures and fountains we would one day like to have in our garden, not one of which was less the $100. What can I say? We have exquisite taste.
He was fidgety so I stopped site seeing . Yes, I could have happily spent hours just poking in each corner and peering at the new potted plants day dreaming about how they would look in a few short months and about garden after garden that I would plant…but My Love was on a quest and I was here as support. So, I took him by the hand and walked up to one of the attendants 9turns out it was the one in charge of flowering plants) and asked if they could help him. Then I tactfully drifted away looking at seeds (and daydreaming more gardens and soil…) while he showed her his list.
She was absolutely baffled. She had never had someone ask for these things in mid winter and few in the spring. I was not looking at her when he explained in few words that he wanted them for their meaning so I do not know what she thought. I like to think she was moved by the beauty of the gift and would be telling her co workers and friends about the list and incredible man for days. From her voice she was disappointed that she couldn’t help, but was excited and impressed with his choices. She said she would have them in the Spring but had nothing from the list now and really nothing to compare. He had hoped to give me seeds if they didn’t have the plants, they didn’t even have those.
He was so disappointed.
It is rather sad actually how few different kinds of flowers are available in florist shops. Many Roses and lilies, some tulips and carnations; but not what My Love was searching for.
Finally he accepted defeat and went to plan B.
While researching (yes actually researching) my flowers he had found the one he most longed to give to me had inspired a song by an Artist I really enjoy. So we went now on a quest for it.
We found it.
I think I almost started crying when he played it for me the first time; he was heading for the mountains as it played and all the birds seemed to be playing and dancing in the wind as we drove and listened. I love the last verse the most.
He says he is not done yet, but I say he should be. I plan to make a garden out of his list
And for you other romantics out there who believe the Language of Flowers should not be lost, should not go quietly into the night to fade like the stars at dawn,
here is the page I sent My Love to: The Forgotten Language of Flowers
And in case you haven't figured out the Flower he was most longing to give me is it
Amaranth: Immortality; Unfading Love
I think I may send him some Sage and Spanish Jasmine, maybe Yellow Tulips with the second meaning too!
What would you send to your love?