A Valentine’s Day Letter

Scan of a Valentine greeting card dated 1909.
Scan of a Valentine greeting card dated 1909. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Warning: Usually I write blog posts in the hopes of bringing a smile to your face and a chuckle to your throat, but not always. It depends on the subject matter. And since today is Valentine’s Day, a day for tears and sadness and sobbing into your pillow…no, wait, that’s my Valentine’s Day, not yours…forget what I just wrote, okay? Whew! Thanks.

Anyway, today is Valentine’s Day and for reasons unknown to me I just had to write a Valentine’s Day letter to my husband. Yes, I’m well-aware that he is deceased and won’t actually get to read the letter, but maybe somehow he’ll know that when I wrote it I was thinking about him, and surely that must count for something in the big scheme of things.

If you’d rather not travel down this path with me today, I completely understand and will see you again soon…no hard feelings…


Dear Gary,

Today is Valentine’s Day, so maybe that’s one reason I dreamt of you this morning, in dawn’s early hours.

In my dream you were away and I didn’t know when you were coming back, and I missed you terribly.

I was at the home where I grew up and there were workmen there doing renovations. They had hammers and saws and piles of lumber lying about the house and the yard and the workmen were tearing out all the ceilings in the house.

I was outside,  where the maple tree-lined driveway begins, when I realized that you had come back and you were upstairs in the house….but as I walked toward the house to go to you an entire portion of it came crashing down onto the driveway and just missed hitting me and covering me in rubble.

I was sure that you were somewhere in that pile, underneath the beams and Sheetrock and plaster and I started to dig for you….but I couldn’t find you. I was crying and almost hysterical in my grief that you were dead and I had been unable to save you…

Then I went upstairs in the house (to what was left of the upstairs), gingerly made my way across a few scattered beams to a back bedroom, and there you were, sitting in the corner on the floor, your knees pulled up to your chest.

You didn’t say a word–you just held out your arms to me, and the look on your face held such love for me that it took my breath away.

I was filled with relief that you were alive, but I was also extremely angry at you for making me worry about you and I pounded your chest and shouted, “How could you do that—make me think that you were dead when you were hiding up here the whole time I was searching for your body?”

My pounding loosened what remained of the floor and together we fell through the ceiling, landing on that pile of rubble outside, clinging to each other.

I still wanted to be angry at you, really wanted to be angry, but you started to kiss my face, and then my mouth, and then your hands moved to pull me even tighter into you, and my anger gave way to passion.

We made love right there, in the driveway, and it was beautiful and moving and neither of us were concerned that someone might see us…as far as I can recall, no one did…and then my dream ended and I woke up to find myself alone in my bed.

And I’ve been melancholy all day, unable to settle down to accomplish anything, missing you so much that I am in physical pain, and wishing that my dream hadn’t been a dream at all but had been real, and that you were still with me today.

My grief counselor told me that days like this will continue for many years to come, when milestones or holidays or celebrations strike to once again remind me of what I lost when you died. But she said that I will get better at coping with the feelings that arise on these days, and I truly hope she knows of what she speaks.

But I’m not there yet, so please forgive me, Gary, for crying like a baby today. I know that I told you I would be strong and would be okay, and for the most part I think I am. Just not every day.

Happy Valentine’s Day, dear; I love you and miss you, and will write again soon.

All my love,


19 thoughts on “A Valentine’s Day Letter

  1. A very touching post, Sylvia. Isn’t it wonderful how we can feel our loved ones presence in a dream even when they are no longer with us? Those times are so very precious, our feelings so very real.I don’t think they ever leave us.

    1. Thanks for the nice comment, Laura. And yes, I’m trying to look at it as being thankful that Gary visits with me in the night…doesn’t make me miss him less during the day, though. 😦

    1. Hi Linda–didn’t want to make anyone upset or uncomfortable, but really wanted to share my thoughts of what Valentine’s day can be like for someone who is missing a mate…I’ve decided that next year I’m not going to look at Face Book and maybe not even turn my computer on that day if it still bothers me…not sure why I didn’t think of that this year! Thanks for thinking of me…it’s nice to know that some of my cyber-friends really do understand and care….

      On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 1:48 AM, Sylvia Morice: Write the Words, Share the

    1. Mo–what a lovely sentiment for you to write–thank you so much for putting my dream in that perspective. When my mom died my daughter used to comment that Grammy visited her in the night–meaning that she was in her dreams…So I guess Gary has been visiting me a lot lately…

  2. Beautiful love that lives on in you… thank you for sharing such a heartfelt peek into your soul. You may be comforted to know that while I never had a love like yours… I almost phoned my Mom to wish her a happy day. I also almost bought a Valentines’ card to send to her… realized for the millionth time she left us for heaven in 2010 and thought about sending one anyway to: Mom c/o Heaven. Thank you for validating that LOVE day is not merely about celebrating loves we have now but ALL love for all of time. Big hugs, sister-friend, much love xo

    1. We were extremely close, Tess–childhood sweethearts who never fell out of love with each other. I do treasure my memories and through the sadness do realize that I was fortunate to know a love like we had.

  3. The closer a couple is, and the more they mean to each other the harder it is to accept being separated. I am sad for you, Sylvia.

    I heard a newspaper reporter on the radio today and he said that Valentine’s Day made people think about what is missing from their lives. He specifically mentioned widows and widowers. It’s no comfort, but thought you’d like to hear his opinion.

    1. I think that reporter was spot-on with his analysis of how a celebration for lovers does make a person realize what they are missing and will never get back (unlike a divorce, where there is always the possibility of eventual reconciliation, death of a loved one is permanent…no second chances).
      I hope I didn’t ruin other people’s valentines day with my post because that wasn’t my intent….but thank you for understanding my sadness.

  4. I understand … I’ve been where you are, dreams and all, where my mind fights to overcome the reality … all I can say is it gets a little easier with time … but days like this are still somber … love you …

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