It wasn't Valentine's day, it wasn't even my birthday or Christmas. One day last spring, however, my husband Lee performed the most romantic act in my behalf that I could ever imagine. Even though this happened in just one day, he had spent many days and involved many people to pull off this surprise.
For many years, it had become evident that I would eventually have to have knee replacement surgery. Even though that surgery was well thought out and we planned it for the most desirable date, it was still very difficult for me to leave my husband in Russia where we work, and go to Loma Linda, California for the surgery. Through no fault of his own, Lee's schedule was scrambled, and he couldn't be with me for my surgery. However, by readjusting appointments, he was able to come to California about ten days after my surgery. In the meantime, wonderful friends were attentive to my needs and helped me make important decisions.
The day Lee flew back to Moscow after his brief visit, I sobbed like a little girl with a broken heart. In our heads we knew that we had made the best decision about having the surgery done at that time. In our hearts, however, we couldn't bear the separation.
My doctor said to plan on staying in California for three months. Had I not lived so far away, I probably could have gone home a bit sooner. In spite of all my good intentions of getting well quicker, it didn't happen. I could not will my leg to heal any quicker than the normal process demanded.
E-mail was our lifeline. Two letters a day was our minimum. Often I would write several times during the day. Eventually my doctor let me begin planning my discharge date. I was going to spend the last week or so before returning to Russia at our daughter's home in northern California. Finally I was well enough to make plane reservations and plan that trip.
At that time our letters took on a different tone. After being away from home for so long, and accumulating many things, I was concerned about having enough room in my suitcases. Lee told me he had made arrangements with some fellow who would be able to help me by taking a suitcase full of my things from our daughter's home to Moscow. The plan sounded very workable. He didn't tell me the man's name, but said he would e-mail all the details to our daughter.
On our way from the airport to her house, I asked my daughter if her dad had sent the information about this kind man who would transport my things. "Yes," she said. "I have all that at the house."
Katie, my nine-year-old granddaughter, was dancing at the door when we arrived. "Oma," she said, "can I show you our surprise?" Quite frankly, I was not interested in a surprise at the moment. I wanted to hug the child and kiss her. But Katie was persistent. I decided the hugs and kisses could come later. Katie ran to her room and came out leading her grandpa. I was speechless. Could this really be happening? How on earth did he manage to come to California from Russia without my knowledge? It was he that was the mystery man who was going to take my extra suitcase back to Moscow! I was surprised at how skillfully Lee had completely surprised me.
We were together one precious week at our daughter's home. He flew back to Moscow and in a short time I went back to Loma Linda. After a few last medical appointments I was on my way back to home and husband. I floated ten feet off the ground for days after the great surprise. His coming was in itself a wonderful love gift. What he had to go through to keep it a surprise from me, however, showed a measure of romance such as I had never imagined was possible. I thought to myself that these are the kinds of things we do when we love each other and that romance comes in different forms.
Most women wish that their husbands would be more romantic. We tend to think in terms of candlelight dinners, flowers, and boxes of chocolates. Your husband's idea of romance is probably much more creative than these traditional ones. It could be that you are so fixated on the traditional ideas that you are overlooking the many, many ways that he tells you every day that he loves you. According to Webster's dictionary, one aspect of romance is chivalrous devotion. I rather imagine that your husband shows you that side of romance every day. Thank him for these acts. Praise him for his efforts and you will be pleased at how the romance will increase!