Oliver & I used to do holidays big.
We were young, head-over-heels in love, and wanted everyone to know it. There were many birthdays, Christmases, dating anniversaries and other important dates that we surprised each other with generous gifts, each one topping the previous year's. There are certain "investments" that you put into someone you love, especially when newly dating. Investments of the emotional and monetary kind. I guess that's one of the ways you know someone loves you...how much they give of their time, energy, and resources.
I think we started to realize how love is a marathon though. And not very perfect at all. That how we showed each other love on a daily basis was the real stuff. And not easy. Taking out the trash or greeting me at the door every day with hugs somehow became a more personal act of love to me.
Oliver feels loved through words of affirmation and mostly, acts of service. Once we realized this, it became easier for me to do things every day that I knew would make him feel loved and respected as a man. Knowing how much I can encourage him with my words and just taking care of some errands or the dishes helps motivate me during the daily grind of life.
On the contrary, I found that quality time and physical touch were the most important ways that I feel loved and appreciated. Oliver knows that lots of hugs and having a date night every week will do wonders for us and help keep our marriage a priority. Yes, we screw up sometimes, but by far this knowledge of how we're wired has been a God-send and helps us understand one another better.
So far, love has brought the highest of highs and lowest of lows. It's been the best thing to ever happen to us, but also the hardest thing to maintain. I hope these words can bring some wisdom to those younger than us and also, bring a smile to those much wiser than us in love.
I hope you all were able to spend Valentine's with someone you love or, even better, doing something you love! We went simple this year and got coffee & donuts downtown. With some other little gifts on the side of course :)