He starts my car to warm it up and then he shovels the snow off my windshield.
He drives my car to the gas station to fill the tires with air.
It took many years of marriage before I appreciated being loved in this way by my husband. I was the “chick flick” kind of girl that loved romantic books and movies. I spent so much time dreaming of what a romantic husband was because what I saw in the movies, magazines and books was what I wanted in my own marriage. My favorites were the movies where the man would do special things for his wife like surprise her with gifts, cook a meal for her or take her on romantic getaways.
I bought into the thought that women should expect their men to do a certain amount of housework, childcare, and romantic planning for their wives, but I was not prepared for what I discovered. I started paying attention to how my husband really showed his love and found out that I really did prefer his way of loving me and being romantic.
He would grab a cool washcloth and hold it on my head when I had morning sickness all day long.
He stayed up many nights to rub my shoulders, neck, or back when I could not sleep.
He accompanied me to my medical appointments and sat in many waiting rooms waiting for results of a surgery or procedure that I was having.
He does not buy me candy, but he buys me vitamin supplements to keep me healthy.
He prays with me so that we may worship God together.
He does not prepare a romantic dinner with candles and special linens, but he asks me out for lunch or dinner for a weekly date.
He calls me from work just to tell me that he is thinking about me.
Even though we are both busy throughout the day, we text one another just as a reminder that we are thinking about each other.
He listens to my worries and fears and somehow makes me feel as if they are not as bad as I thought.
We do not travel the world, take cruises, dine at five-star restaurants, or buy one another lavish gifts, but we are romantic in our own little way. Not the way that is shown on social media or in movies, but in the way that is meaningful for us.
Flowers, gifts, dinners, and vacations are all symbols of one’s love for another, but they don’t last forever. True love can be found in every small act of kindness and self-giving of yourself to your spouse.
It is the smiles, laughter, and the wink of an eye that only the two of you understand.
It is the way that you hold one another and gaze into each other’s eyes as if you are seeing each other for the first time.
It is the history that you have had together by raising a family, moving to different homes, getting through medical emergencies, and all the struggles that you have overcome together.
It is growing old together and bearing with one another’s weaknesses.
True love is a romantic story that only the two of you have written together throughout the years that can be told again and again to your children and grandchildren.
He was not like the husbands that I watched in the movies, but he was the one who took care of me, loved me and was faithful to me for the last 40 years. My love and respect has grown deeper for him each year that we are together. He is the one that I will love, honor, and cherish for the rest of my life.