Married Valentines

“Can you believe we’re married?”
It’s a question my husband Merritt and I have asked each other often in the last almost two years. It seemed too good to be true. Best friends for so many years, finally being married to each other made our cup truly overflow.
The other night, as we lay there exhausted from a long week, trying to tune out the baby crying in the cradle next to us, I whispered to Merritt, “Can you believe we’re married?”
This time it was with a tired chuckle that he answered, “Yes.”
Yes, diaper bags and burp cloths are now an ever-present reality for my Valentine and me. Our terms of endearment now include “Daddy” and “Mommy.” Our moments of quiet alone are few and far between.
Even though Merritt is still my first priority, that often means feeding Ruth first so I can focus on him. Acts of Service may not be the primary love language for either of us, but it’s become the love language of parenting together: Merritt changing Ruth’s diaper in the middle of the night so I can close my eyes for a few minutes, me putting away her toys and blanket so he doesn’t trip over them when he comes home.
But the beauty of parenting along with your Valentine is that we have as much fun talking about potty training and where to put the crib as we did making house plans and swapping favorite Country love songs.
Last Thursday found us in Hallmark, because Merritt had a coupon he wanted to use. I offered to carry the baby seat while he shopped, because I already had a stash of Valentines I’d bought before we were married. We found my mother-in-law back in the bargain room, buying a baby rattle for Ruth. (Did we want the pig or the giraffe? We chose the pig, because it would go with all her other farm animal toys.) So our worlds of romance and parenthood often meet.
Being married to your Valentine doesn’t always mean cards, chocolates, and roses. Flowers and cards don’t always fit in the budget, and chocolate does nothing to help those extra pounds of baby fat disappear. But an extra-special dinner served on his favorite dishes, followed by a quiet candle-lit evening on the couch can turn any day into Valentine’s Day at our house.
Being married to your Valentine brings out the romance in the practical things of everyday life.
Maybe that’s why the Valentine card I’m giving him this year has a scandalous little ditty about how nice it is to see his clothes on the clothesline next to mine.
Maybe that’s why, when he’s propped up in bed reading the latest Little Britches book aloud to me while I rub his sore leg, I lose track of the story for a moment while looking at the man I adore.

Maybe that’s why we’ve never been happier than when we tip-toe over to the crib and stand there with our arms around each other, watching our daughter sleep.

Yes, I can believe we’re married.
That’s why it’s still too good to be true.


  1. Amen. We celebrated our very first Valentines Day together as a married couple this year. It was delightful. We often look at each other and whisper the same words that you do, “Can you believe we’re really married?” It seems too good to be true!!

    We are thoroughly happy!

  2. Aww, a Valentines Day post from a very happy wife and mother. 🙂
    I’m so happy for you and I truly do believe that you and Merritt deserve each
    Enjoy your sweet husband and your precious daughter! and thank you so much for sharing with us.
    Many Blessings,

  3. Gretchen –

    As a relatively new mom (my DS is 6 months old), I totally agree with you. Romance is different now, as parents, but it is still love. Looking at my little family reminds me of how much our Father loves us – I may not have a home, but I have an apartment. My furniture may not be fancy, but we bought and paid for it, new, and we’re thankful for that. Our bookshelves have tons of books for us to enjoy, our pantry is stocked full of food, and our little man has tons of toys, thanks to overindulgent grandparents. Yes, they’re all things, and we’d be happy if we didn’t have any of these things, as long as we have each other.

    Happy Valentine’s Day!


  4. Oh, that was one of the most beautiful, touchingly sweet posts I’ve ever read. Thank you for giving us a glimpse into your life. I am so blessed by what you share.

    Happy Valentine’s Day! :o)

  5. Awww… to me, that was an inspiration to wait on the Lord’s *perfect* way, for He is GOOD. Faithful. Wise. Thanks, Gretchen.

  6. Aww, Gretchen! Your posts are so refreshing and balanced, showing the practical and romantic sides of life–and that both can walk together hand in hand. 🙂 Thank you for sharing!

  7. Gretchen,I sort of feel like I grew up reading you and so it’s so interesting “watching” as you become a mommy! I married at eighteen and went to live out of the country for some years but every once in a while I would check in and remember when you were courting. Then after forgetting for quite a while I came back and you were pregnant. Wow! Time flies! Now you’re a mama and I can relate so well and it brings back lots of memories of our firstborn and the changes it brought to us as a couple. I’m 25 and have four little ones now and I can say the fourth is as sweet as ever! And you can still be great Valentines too! Marcella

  8. That was such a heartwarming post, Gretchen! Thank you for sharing your life with us all. I pray that God bless you, Merritt and your precious little one!


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