Of Vick’s and Valentine’s

We bought it on our honeymoon.  The receipt is still in the back of our photo album, along with the rest of our maps and brochures and receipts chronicling that week.  (And we think gas is expensive now!)

We found it at the Mammoth Hot Springs General Store.  Little did we know my sister-in-law would be working in that very same store four years later. And little did we imagine that little jar of Vick’s vapor rub would last us almost seven years.

We threw it away last week, after we’d scraped and rubbed the last of its contents out. The expiration date was the same year as our wedding, proving it had waited a long time for some traveler with a chest cold to need it. 

But despite its age, that Vick’s still had plenty of strong vapors when we dug it out of the cupboard once again last week to ease the breathing of our two youngest.

I’d had such a cold that I didn’t even have a voice two weeks before our wedding. But God had given me yet another miracle on my wedding day by allowing me to enjoy it unhindered by that cold bug.  But I could only run on adrenaline and realized dreams so long.  Because no amount of the salsa we shared in our first meal as man and wife could chase away the relapse I had in those early days of our honeymoon.

My new hubby and I laughed as we remembered that visit when we’d both had such dreadful colds and red noses. And that other visit when every other person in our families got a cold but the two of us.  We were fairly sure all the laughter we shared together generated lots of antibodies.  But then, staying up late talking often seemed to have the opposite effect on our health!

In sickness and in health.  Buying Vick’s vapor rub on our honeymoon and changing dressing on a broken leg two months after we were married. Finishing our new home side by side and birthing three children together. Rubbing Vick’s on our little ones in the wee hours of the night and rejoicing that we didn’t both have the cold at the same time this time. Quiet moments stolen together after the children are finally asleep and listening to audio books together when we’re too tired to read aloud.

For better or for worse. On the Valentine’s Days and the Vick’s days — and the days that include both.

Happy Valentine’s Day, my love. Here’s to the last of the Vick’s for a while!

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