The Art of (MY) Valentines
Valentines is the holiday for lovers. It is also the holiday of red hearts, roses, cupid’s arrow and amore’. It is a holiday that brings us memories of shared valentines at school, candy hearts with little sayings, our first Valentine’s Day dance and our first boyfriend or girlfriend. It is a day that reminds us of the gifts in elementary or middle school and the parties to go along with it all.
Valentine’s Day for me is none of these things. Valentine’s Day for me is my son’s birthday.
I want to take this opportunity to pay a special tribute to him. My son is grown now and he is happily married to a lovely girl and he has a very successful career. He has played by the rules, done everything as he should and he has been and become quite successful.
These are of course reasons for me and his father to be more than proud. But these are the little reasons to be proud. The bigger reasons are for things like the way he thinks of others before himself. From the time he was a baby he never took anything for himself that he did not ask for his sister to have one as well. Although all boy, he was so kind and thoughtful. I remember an instance when he was very small; it broke my heart that he had noticed my tendency to worry and he bought me a worry stone to add to my collection of rocks he had given to me over the years. He didn’t want his Mommy to worry.
He has always been willing to work hard to make someone else happy. His father, a master plumber by trade, wanted his son to work with his brain and not his back. He made sure to take him to work to teach him what hard labor was like. My son worked right alongside his father’s workers and they would comment that he could keep up with them. For his first “girlfriend” in elementary school he wanted to buy her a mum for homecoming. His dad told him he had to earn the money, so he worked in the attic that whole weekend helping lay insulation. For those not familiar - this is a dirty, hot, itchy job - and I don’t know an eight year old that would have done it. When he was done he took his money and at the flower shop he painstakingly picked out each ribbon and bling to be placed on the mum and paid for it with his hard earned cash.
He has always been this way. He is a boss now and he has employees that would rather drive in Austin traffic on a daily basis than transfer closer to home and loose him as a boss. Everyone who meets him loves him and they should. His sister puts it so well,
“my brother is my hero.”
Not to say I can’t write a tribute to her as well and will, it’s just not for “My Valentine’s Day,” the best one in the whole world for a mother of a perfect son. I remember once his girlfriend at the time, and eventually my daughter-in-law, made a powerful comment to me, after I had read an application letter my son had written for school. He had written in the section asking for his goals in life; that he wished to be a good husband, a good father and a good man. I had jokingly commented that he had left out a good son. And she correctly stated; “he has already given you that.” How right she was and how very fortunate I am!
He is truly a genuinely nice guy, and always has been. He really stops to help old ladies, and people who need a jump start, he is the first to volunteer to help and the last one standing to help with a clean-up. He is a friend for life and cares and loves all those dear to him. He has a smile that lights up a room! These are but a few of the many examples I could give of his generous and sensitive nature.
Although he is lives right here in town, he is grown now and has his own life. I must say I miss him very much! It is hard to give up being around “that kind of special” on a daily basis. For all you empty nester moms out there; although I enjoy my freedom, I sure miss the heck out of those days! Thank you all for your indulgence in allowing me to share my immense pride and joy in wishing my son with all my love and admiration a Happy Valentine’s Day and Happy Birthday!
Tara Ubelhor M.Ed., LPC