I was thirteen the first time I ever gave a boy a valentine. I worked on it for weeks.
Not the card – I bought one of those oversized cards that’s only funny when you’re thirteen.
But how I gave it to him, well, that took some plotting.
I decided that he needed to open up his locker on Valentine’s Day and find a box of candy and a card from me, so this would require the assistance of his homeroom teacher.
His homeroom teacher was also our eighth grade math teacher. A throwback from the late ‘60s, complete with psychodelic mini skirts, go go boots, and huge hair. We figured that couldn’t all be her own hair, so we called her ‘Wiggy‘ behind her back. She shaved her eyebrows and on the days she forgot to pencil them in, she was even scarier than usual. And she told far too many stories about her cat named Herman.
But on the day I came by to ask for her help, she willingly agreed. Even better, looking back, she never laughed at me.
We agreed that I would come by her room early the next morning, before he got to school, and she would open his locker for me. And the most important part, she wouldn’t reveal my identity.
Valentine’s Day arrived and it was one of the few times I got to school early. She followed me out to the hall and we quickly opened his locker. She watched as I put the oversized card and a small box of Russell Stover chocolates wrapped in red cellophane inside.
We closed the locker, I thanked her for helping and she went back to her classroom.
As far as I know, she never said a word about what we did that morning.
I look back on that now and can’t help but chuckle at myself.
But it was serious at the time.
And it was nice to have an adult realize that.
After that, I couldn’t call her ‘Wiggy’ with the rest of the kids. Suddenly she wasn’t nearly as scary.
Even when she forgot her eyebrows.