The Best Valentines Gift Ever!

Of all the Valentines gifts Jonathan has given to me since we dated 23 years ago, today’s gift has been the most incredible for me! At 44 years old I learned how to get a visa to Vietnam, take my girls on the train, make it on time, squeeze into the green buses outside the train station, make it to the China border crossing, then Vietnam customs all on my own!!

True love is more than being romantic. It is the willingness to invest and grow another person to become who they are fully created to be.

I am so use to following Jonathan on our trips since we dated and got married. I never had to lead or figure things out. I just had to follow, play and feast. Yes, initially I felt a bit unsure I could do this. Yet the reality is here: we will be trekking for one year beginning in June and will need to share the load of team leading. Our kids will take turns too. There is courage in numbers but will be times each of us need to be able to hold our own ground as individual backpackers. My kids have a lot more guts and travel sense than me. They were raised and trained by their daddy since we lived in China. Border crossing, trekking is a way of life.

I grew up with a super protective dad that never let me adventure out on my own, not even let me go camping with my friends at 20 years old. I was so dependent on my dad, and then my husband on many things in life. Jonathan is so different from my dad as a husband. While my dad took good care of us, he always wanted us near him and was controlling and over protective, afraid
anything bad or dangerous would happen to us. I never learned how to be fully independent as my own person. Jonathan on the other hand fosters independence and walks along side of us until we are comfortable and confident enough to fly solo in all areas of life. He is an encouraging life coach. He will keep repeating the steps until I get it and not feel afraid or unable. What my dad missed in my life, Jonathan Su filled in the blanks!

True love is more than being romantic. It is the willingness to invest and grow another person to become who they are fully created to be. Jonathan knew I could become a writer and gave me that extra push to follow through and finish up. He knows I can learn anything and does’t let me get away with “I can’t do this because I am not able…” He knows the kids and I are very able and pushes after us to finish up and finish well. Without him in my life I wouldn’t have so many dreams come true by midlife.

Thanks for the diamond engagement ring, my first Honda CRV when we graduated from Kellogg Business School, our own designed apartment in China, 3 kids, my own ducks, chickens, turkeys, dogs and cats, my own laptop, new pots, pans and household appliance gadgets, life is so good with all these goodies. But best of all:

Honey, thank you for the gift of independence!

I can become all that I am meant to be because of you! Happy Valentines Day.

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