Recently, I experienced two of the sweetest expressions of love that I have ever remembered seeing. It was the most tender moment of heart-felt appreciation and honor that anyone could know. It was one of the richest “motherhood moments,” and now even one of the most precious “grandbaby moments,” that I will cherish for a lifetime!

Our little baby-grand, the sweetest, most precious, tiny, two-year old, named Vivi, that you would ever have the privilege to know, gave her Pops (Billy, my husband of nearly 29 years), the most endearing, tender, hug of love, as her Daddy (our oldest son, Garrett), held her up to give a kiss goodnight. With both little arms held wide, she reached the full breadth of her Pop’s shoulders, and laid her little head on his chest, right near his heart; she stayed, and stayed, and stayed, and stayed, and then stayed some more. . . with the longest little embrace of the century. It was the ‘’biggest” little hug, I had ever seen.

When the fullest expression of her love was extended and received, a great amount of appreciation was deposited into his heart. When she was finished giving her big, little hug, she leaned back and looked at his face and then gave him a big, sweet kiss right on his cheek! The smile on his face was priceless! It was official! He was truly, and sweetly appreciated!

A few days later, Billy was cooking one of the family’s favorite meals, skillet pasta, in a way that only he can, with the peppers and onions, and grilled chicken and veggies, like they all love! All the kids were gathered around in the kitchen eating the next batch he cooked up, especially the one with the Cajun seasoning, which is his best one ever, of course, when our college-aged daughter, Gillian, spoke up and exclaimed vibrantly, with sincere devotion, “No One Does It Like YOU, Dad!!!” At which point, his face went bright with smile, and the look in his eyes was tenderly priceless! It was official! He was truly and genuinely appreciated, cherished and adored!

Article Written By: Debbie Harper, Ph.D.