Love you more

About 16 years ago, I found myself saying “love you too” to the woman that would eventually become my wife. The problem with saying “I love you too” is that it sounds like an afterthought, like you didn’t think to say it first and now you’re trying to make up lost ground, trying to reassure the other person.

In short, it sounds lame.

So, I hit on the (admittedly corny) idea of saying “love you more.”

Yes, other people rolled their eyes and made gagging gestures, but that was still better than the “love you too” alternative.

Now let’s fast forward almost 16 years. A friend of ours had volunteered to watch the kids for the weekend, giving my wife and I a weekend alone in St. Augustine. We picked the kids up kids yesterday afternoon, and as I backed out of her driveway, they waved their hands out their windows and shouted “Love you more!”

At first she didn’t hear. They yelled louder.

A big old smile spread over her face.

“No, I love you more!” she giggled as she waved back.

“No,” the boys practically screamed, laughing. “I love you more!”

She waved both hands, grinning from ear to ear and practically hopping up and down, “No, I love you more!”

I pulled the minivan into the street and drove away. The kids continued to shout and wave until they couldn’t see her anymore. Then they let out big satisfied sighs.

Now that’s the way to say goodbye.

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