Happy Valentine’s Day to my ‘sweethearts’

Daviel Sterna photo Finally, someone took a nice picture of my sweetheart Kevin and me! We were attending his niece Anna’s wedding. I’m wearing the beautiful dress my mother wore when she married her late husband, Garnet.

When I first met the man with whom I’ve spent the last 18 years, he was without a doubt one of Sublette County’s perennial bachelors who loved women … as many as possible.

We became inseparable and that changed now and then over those years, as most relationships evolve.

We’ve had mutual and one-sided separations but always ended up back together. This unlikely relationship – a true Wyoming cowboy, born and bred, with one woman his own age, no less – probably still surprises many who know either of us.

Over these years, we have both learned a lot about each other – good and bad, nice and not nice, angry and contented.

For one example, saying, “I love you” is NOT the same as saying, “I like you.”

But he and make a point of saying, “I love you,” and meaning it, at least once a day and usually twice.

It was not an easy thing for me to say, being brought up when if you said “I love you” once, that should be good for another 12 or 13 years?

Today is an odd Valentine’s Day because I am right now in the act of flying to El Paso to see my mom, joining up with my back-east sister at Denver International (although I am writing this before I catch my early-morning flight out of Jackson).

We’ll drive from El Paso to Deming, New Mexico, and share a room and car for a week, while she tries her best to organize us efficiently and with purpose. My brother, whose hair might still be longer than mine, will come along with us, having transplanted himself from New York to Texas.

Other brother? Sorry Charlie!

Another sweetheart is Daviel, my not-quite-granddaughter who lives with me during the school year and makes my life a lot more fun, nerve-wracking and complete with her unique wisdom. She and Finley make up my household; we’re pretty well tuned into each other’s moods and preferences.

My sister and I plan to arrive “today!” in Deming with Valentine cards and treats for Mom, who is probably looking out the window at the Floridas mountains behind Rockhound State Park, stony and bright, wishing she was out there instead of in here.

Anyway, I couldn’t let the rare opportunity of having this blank space, right here, slip away without stealing some of it for myself.

Happy Valentine’s Day and I love you all!