HOW DO I LOVE THEE, LET ME COUNT THE WAYS

March 7, 2021

Many of you will recognize that the title of today’s post is a famous line from one of Elizabeth Barrett Brownings’s sonnets.

Early in mine and Sandra’s marriage, we used to write little love notes to each other and place them in a conspicuous place for the other one to easily find. Usually, the notes were short. I think the one we both used the most was simply, “ I love you.”

But one particular morning, I decided to be a little more eloquent on my note. I don’t know whether it was just because I had a little extra time that morning or what. But I started my note with the line of the title of today’s post. Then underneath the title, I began to “count the ways” I loved Sandra. I made my list of ten different ways. Then at the end of the note, I said there are so many ways I love you that it would take a big book to even scratch the surface of all the ways I love you.

When she found the note, she began to tear up real big and came over to my chair where I was drinking my morning coffee and gave me a real big hug and said to me, “This note’s a real keeper. I’m going to put it in a safe place where I can read it often.”

But moving so much through the years, her note got lost as well as so many other things do during moves. One of my favorite adages from Mark Twain is: “Three moves equal one fire.”

So Sandra told me one time that the note I wrote her must have gotten lost. And then she said to me, “The note doesn’t matter anyway because I will always know in my heart that you still love me all the ways you had listed in the note.” That really made me feel good.

Now don’t stop reading because what I have written so far has been rather personal, just between Sandra and me.

I would love to advise you on several little ways you can show and tell your spouse the many different ways you love them. So keep reading, and hopefully, you can find a few keepers that will help you to have a long happy marriage as Sandra and I have been blessed with for 55 precious years.

The next thing I’m going to write will be something that incorporates many of the ways I try to show and tell Sandra some of the “ways.” I love her. I will bet my bottom dollar that many of you also do such things that say: this is because I love you.

Last Thursday, Sandra had to go to a hospital here in Longview, Texas to have knee replacement surgery. She spent two long days and nights away from me. Before her surgery, she did up everything she could around the house so I wouldn’t have to worry about doing them during her stay at the hospital. Then she wrote a long note for me of things I would have to do for her around the house in her absence.

One of the many things she wrote me was how to take care of the pets while she was gone. She told me what time to feed them, what pet likes to eat what, etc. about her babies. Then she had cooked so much in advance of her absence for me to eat and told me where everything was located in the refrigerator, what food was on what shelf, and many other things where I would not have to worry about cooking anything while she was gone.

Sound familiar? I’m sure it does. Spouses do things for each other all the time that says, “I love you” without us even thinking that what we do for them is showing them how we love them without us needing to use words. So I did everything Sandra instructed me to do while she was gone. Plus I did many other things too that would be a surprise to her when she got home Saturday afternoon.

Then there was the getting her to the hospital in the first place, getting her checked in, getting all her personal things in her room so they would be there when she returned from recovery, and all the extra walking I did for several days that I’m not accustomed to doing. Sandra told me, “I know you’re doing a lot of extra things for me that you usually don’t have to do. I don’t know what I would do without you.” I replied to that statement from her by reminding her of all the things she had done for me while I was very sick a few years ago. Then I said, “Isn’t that what God commanded us to do when he said that two would become one?”

When spouses love each other it becomes natural that we do things for each other that says I’m showing you SOME of the ways I love you.

I could continue writing on this subject, but I’m sure I reminded you and advised you of the many ways we say I love you without ever having to utter a single word.

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God Bless,
Spencer Plumley