Love From the Cheap Seats

Anita Helm

By Anita Helm, February 13, 2023


Somehow every year the designated love date takes on this unrealistic and emotionally careless ranking with men and women.  I had a lover for 25 years (William Helm) who purposely never made a fuss about February 14th .  Full disclosure, he and I made a pact early in our marriage that if he bought me a very large diamond for the rest of our marriage he didn’t have to do any special occasion gifts.  He always did anyway but he knew he was covered with our pact.  In reality William loved me every day and he felt one day (February 14th) was totally not ENOUGH to express his love.

In thinking about another February 14th more than a year after William’s transition to heaven, I have made it a point to share love messages to everyone during this time. 

My Podcast Milkshake Monday entitled “LOVE WITHOUT EXCUSES” will speak of Christ’s love.

My blog is going to speak of love in a lighter note and one that is far more practical for the common reader.  My intention is to soothe those who miss their loved ones.  My intention is to embrace those who believe they are unlovable.  My intention is to wipe the tears from the broken hearted. And finally my intention is to defrost some hearts that have waxed cold.

Often, we overlook kindness and thoughtfulness as mere acts.  I want to shake a stick at that dormant tree. People of every type and characteristic demonstrate love and compassion differently. Yes, your way is not my way, and my way certainly won’t be your way.  Hey modern day cave men, acts of love aren’t always heart shaped balloons, dozens of roses, pounds of chocolates, jewelry boxes or a romp in the sack. 

What about love from the cheap seats? Love in the cheap seats, what do you mean? I giggle to myself, appreciating that some readers will believe I truly mean price tags or what something costs.  I have no thoughts of finances or demeaning or comparing gestures of kindness with things with any kind of price tag.  The most precious things close to our hearts have nothing to do with sales tax and stores.

I recognize that most reading my words don’t view love with magnifying glasses or judge on intentions of anything beyond price tags.  In the training to see the heart, you and I collectively need to measure  love apart from dollars and cents.  The trappings of fine things have caused many a foolish leap into an abyss of messed up intentions.  Price tags don’t denote the core of one’s heart.  If truth be told, the COSTS of something purchased can be further from the truth of how much someone loves or doesn’t love you.

In my poorest days, to those full of luxury and plush bank accounts, I’ll always remember William leaving seven one-dollar bills on my kitchen table.  How could such a small amount touch my soul the way it has all these years?  In his, and my struggle, he gave me all he had...

He was making sure I had something in my pocket for whatever I may need.  Some would mock the amount or ask for more.  Those would demean him because of the blinders and fueling of SELFISHNESS. Selfishness, is not a 4-letter word, but can be far more damaging to a lover’s heart and mind.  I knew this man’s heart. A heart of love and kindness.  Those seven dollars demonstrated a heart of love on full display for the love he had for me.  He gave sacrificially and many in one lifetime will never have a love to do so for them.  There is not a year that goes by that I don’t remember those dollars on the table.  Not a year I don’t speak my gratefulness to GOD for allowing me to experience such a great love.  Those dollars warm me and will until my dying days.

For you dear reader, I want to share some love moments aside of eros love that can be treasured if you allow them to be “noticed.” Let me level-set and be the first to share that love does not have to be romantic in nature. 

Human kindness and caring for another is just as important as acts of eros love.  Love making and extasy have their place but connecting and appreciating kindness outside of fleeting sexual intimacy are just as impassioned.  Our needing to connect one to the other outside of romantically is valuable to the soul and our hearts.

Let me pass along my magnifying glasses to help you see more clearly:

When my postal carrier brought packages or my mail to my door when she knew of the sickness and exhaustion of constant caregiving, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When I saw my neighbor take my trash can back to the side of my house when it was raining, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When the security guard found my keys and let me know they were safe at the front desk and to continue with my workout, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When I received chocolate chips cookies delivered at my door for helping out with my elderly neighbor, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When my friend called me to check on me when I had COVID, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When I got called to ask how I was holding up after Rev’s passing, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When I look on my office wall and see my daughter’s note to say mom you are never alone, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When my four-legged son, jumps like a crazy lunatic whenever I come home from anywhere, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When I go to the deli and the clerk makes a change in my order to save me money, I found love from the cheap seats. 

When I get samples of body lotions or surprise do-dads from my fellow church members just because, I found love from the cheap seats.

So as another February 14th approaches and my mind tries to tell me you don’t have a lover with boxes of chocolate or trinkets or flowers, I smile and say back to my mind, “that’s okay, because I’m loved from the cheap seats!”

Happy Valentine’s Day!

With Love From the Cheap Seats, Anita  

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