Love. I believe that it is a thing best measured by the person receiving it rather than the one giving it. I can say that after a dozen years of holding her, smelling her skin, and gazing love-struck into her chocolate brown eyes, I have never questioned Ana Tigre’s love for me. I am certain there are things she doesn’t do well, but she does everything with so much love, kindness, and consideration for others that one is left not caring about her perfecting mundane tasks. She is the warmth in every sunrise, and her smile and beautiful eyes are what I ache for most when we must be apart. It’s not that I have a more profound capacity to give or care or love; it’s that I have never known a human being that sincerely loves and cares as deeply as she does.
I thank God every morning when I wake and see her lying beside me, just as naturally beautiful as the most intriguing of God’s creations. I am so blessed and so grateful.
Forevermore her forty-fifth birthday will be remembered as her quarantine birthday. It’s was a time filled with so much doom and gloom and so many questions about the future. Yet in our home, it is a place of love and laughter and growth and positive change. And in the center of it all is Ana. As of today, we have four toddlers, yet you won’t hear her complain about the apparent challenge the present for her each day. They are good kids, they have good manners, they are kind to others, and most of all they are happy and vibrant and so sweet and good to each other. They are like their mother, and they are precious.
The last day of April is her birthday, but we spend a week celebrating it. As her birthday week comes to a close, I find myself reflecting on her life and the impact she has had on me, our family, and the people whose lives she has touched. I see a heart for God in everything she does.
And as we snuggled our children tonight before they went to bed, I wonder where I would have been had we not met, or had she given up on me. I know I would not be here.
I waited half a century to find her. I have worked tirelessly to become a better man because of her and for her. It’s a daily walk for me, and I will continue to be a better man for her until I draw my last breath. She is more than worth it.
And so I want to tell you this. You don’t find love. You build it. Never give up on finding the person that is willing to go the distance and do the work it takes to build it with you. It is a daily, sometimes hourly endeavor, but as I sneak up on my sixty-first birthday, I can tell you that the work is worth it.
Love is worth it.