It’s going to be a difficult Valentine’s Day for Joey + Rory, but they are going to make the best of it by having a very special time together.
This Feb. 14 actually marks the 14-year anniversary of their first date, Rory reveals in a new post to his blog, This Life I Live.
“Our very first date was on Valentine’s Day in 2002. The horse-vet clinic Joey worked for at the time, Tennessee Equine Hospital, had a Valentine’s get-together for their staff and she invited me to come with her,” he writes. “That night mustve gone pretty well because two months later we were engaged and two months after that, Joey and I were married.”
This year will be very different, as Joey is in the end stages of her fight with Stage 4 cancer. She is currently in hospice care in her hometown of Alexandria, Ind., where she returned to spend her final days with her family after doctors told her there is nothing more that they can do.
“What I really want to do on this, our 14th Valentine’s together, is share a romantic candle-lit dinner with my bride: grill out rib-eyes on the campfire back home, pour two glasses of red wine and sit across from her at our kitchen table just like we've done on more than one special occasion,” Rory says. “But those things aren't able to happen this year.”
He says Joey isn’t able to eat much, and she mostly sleeps the days and nights away. “So my hope this year instead is to hold her hand and take her on a virtual walk down memory lane together with pictures and videos on my laptop,” he reveals. “I want to take her back to where our lives first began together, and relive this beautiful journey that God has taken us on from that first song she heard me sing at the Bluebird cafe, to the last one we sang together as we stood on stage and took our final bow to the songs that she will leave behind here on earth and the ones she will soon sing for eternity to our sweet Lord in that heavenly choir up yonder.”
There’s one more thing Rory is hoping for this Valentine’s Day.
“That, and I'm hoping for a few soft kisses. The passion for each other that Joey and I once had has been replaced by the sweetest, gentlest kisses,” he says.
“I live for those kisses. They are enough."