When I was a young girl I thought that love meant flowers and candy. I thought it meant hearts and Valentine’s Day and big romantic gestures. I thought love was calling someone all of the time and talking all night on the phone. As I have aged my views of love have changed. As I look around I can see love in everyday occurrences. You have to be paying attention, but it really is all around us. I don’t think it looks like I imagined.
I think love is staying up late to make a special dip for friends you are meeting up with the next day. Taking the time to get the ingredients and putting in the effort to make it right.
I think love is a dad working on the road so his wife can be a stay at home mom. I think it is making the sacrifice of missing ball games so the kids can play in the select leagues.
I think love is a man leaving one job to work a second job when his body already hurts.
I think love is a mom driving 4 hours one way in order to have dinner with her son on his birthday. Then driving 4 hours home in order to take care of the other kids.
I think love is an older couple going to their daughter’s house to take care of her yard because they know she is depressed and just can’t do it herself.
I think love is a sister climbing in bed with her sister to watch Hallmark movies and eat popcorn because she knows bed is where her sister is the most comfortable right now.
I think love is a friend working on your car because he knows your husband is out of town and you need a little help. It’s taking gas to your friend because she ran out in the ATM machine coming to your house.
I think love is a husband holding his wife’s hand.
I think love is a message from an old friend who is far away just seeing if you’re okay.
I think love is a mom making dinner for 40 people every Thanksgiving because she believes in tradition and family.
I think love is driving 6 hours to see family for 2 days and driving 6 hours back home.
I think love is cutting your neighbor’s grass because he just had heart surgery.
I think love is accepting an apology.
I think love is not needing an apology.
I think love is picking up your husband’s suitcase every freaking week from the foyer and doing all of his laundry. So he can go back on the road to make your life more comfortable.
I think love is spending your only day off working on your daughter’s car.
I think love is taking dinner to a friend and her family after she broke her foot.
I think love is showing up each week to play cards with friends even when one might not feel like it.
I think love is found in our actions not flowers. I think it’s always there but if you’re not paying attention, you might miss it. I remember feeling sorry for myself in the psych ward and wanting to blame everyone and hate everything. Then I saw my family walk in to visit me. I was afraid they weren’t coming. When I saw my husband turn the corner my first thought was, “Holy cow. That man really does loves me.”
Stop looking for big romantic gestures. Look for the deeds. That’s where love is.