Great Romantic Gestures

Saturday, 15 February 2014

This post was meant for yesterday, but my Valentine's turned into a long day followed by a longer night of trying to cook while cuddling and toddler with a tummy ache and keeping a six year old entertained. 
All the while my Valentine worked late. Again. 

Now, don't get me wrong. He didn't completely bypass the holiday. He did take me to lunch on Thursday since we were miraculously child-free and in the same place at once. Valentine's Day, itself, just wasn't really any different from any other day of the week. I started the day at work, listening to a co-worker lament over only receiving one red rose when she was certain she deserved twelve. Oh to be young and clueless. Of course, when I was her age I was probably still attending Jack Daniels and chocolate parties on Valentine's Day where you could be in a relationship, but were not allowed to be happy about it-- out of respect for my sorority sisters who were single. I was rather late in settling down, after all.

Her disappointment and my complete lack of romance on 'the big day', got me thinking. With so many different types of love out there-- young love, new love, married-with-kids love, etc.--, what exactly qualifies as a great romantic gesture? Is it a dozen roses? The chance to have dinner cooked while you watch your favorite TV show (as some sad sap requested in a Valentine's post in some newspaper, a picture of which has been making the rounds on Facebook)? Or can it be as simple as my only request-- help cleaning the kitchen (which I got a bit of tonight)?

I remember when it was a dozen roses (although I secretly preferred the mystery of one). And then when it became a more heartfelt gift-- something he really had to think about and know me well to choose. Nowadays with a full-time job and two kids, I will settle for a little extra help around the house and a few precious moments alone to write. But really, I don't find that 'settling' at all. I would have been pleased with flowers or chocolates, but these days romance looks a little different to me. My desires have grown from items to ideals. I prefer quality time over commercial offerings.

I couldn't offer him a gift either with money being so tight. While my hubby worked over 12 hours to build up overtime to help pay off our credit card debt, I carried on doing what I needed to do. I was Mommy first and foremost. I'm sure a number of people my age have missed a gift here or there thanks to financial woes, too. And in the grand scheme of things, it really isn't that important, is it?

This Valentine's Day I got something very unexpected. I got the relief and luxury of knowing that our love doesn't have to be measured in red roses. It could be, but I'm not sure even the Parisian flower market could handle such an order. In fact, our love doesn't have to be measured at all. It just is. And it is strong. Stronger today than back when he was still wooing me with flowers. I don't need a bouquet. All I need is love. 
And that I have in abundance.

'In Your Eyes' by Peter Gabriel
Our song from our movie :-)

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