Love, Unconditional


I’d repeatedly said I wanted nothing for Valentines Day since the non-stop jewelry commercials over Christmas had forced my husband to buy me a small, gem encrusted, gold necklace for my birthday. The man wasn’t rolling in dough (I know because I handle our family’s finances). So, it was a surprise to find a suspicious-looking box, wrapped in shiny red paper, on our kitchen table.

I picked it up and shook it, but there was no rattle or telltale chocolate scent. The dog yapped and barked while she danced around my feet. She, too, wanted to know what the box held.

“Shhh, girl,” I quieted her.

I didn’t want my husband to see how excited the box was making me. I hadn’t bought him anything since we’d promised not to exchange gifts. There was no name and no card, thus I wasn’t sure the box was mine. One of my kids could have brought it over and left it on the table. Why hadn’t they identified the recipient? They knew I hated games. The contents of the box would remain a mystery because I wasn’t opening it.

IMG_0145I popped a second pod of coffee into the Keurig, something I never do, and took my mug over to the big chair by the sliding glass door. Sipping the coffee, I stared out at the snow and pondered the box.

There was no identification. How did I even know it was for me? I wasn’t asking since I had nothing to offer in exchange. This whole situation was very suspicious.

IMG_0158At mid afternoon, I put on a coat and boots to take the dog out for her walk. I lifted her leash and there, attached to her cleanup bag, was a small envelope.

The note inside read, Dear Mom, the red box is from me. I want you to know how much I appreciate you. I wasn’t originally yours, but you’ve adopted me and never treated me like a step-dog. I adore you, love, Lexi.

I opened the box, more than a little teary. Inside was a fuzzy orange and blue scarf I could wear while watching Bears football games. Lexi would be rewarded with a little chopped chicken in her food as soon as we got back inside.



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Educator, Author, Blogger, and supporter of Independent Writers. One mystery novel, The Neon Houses, Find me on Twitter @boom_lyn.

10 thoughts on “Love, Unconditional

  1. What a beautiful story and gift. My husband and I always agree on no gifts, but we always seem to find a way around that…lol Enjoy your scarf and Happy Valentine’s Day Linda!

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