I’ve been wondering lately – what can I do to keep from taking my husband for granted?
I don’t mean that I’m not taking care of the house, being sweet to him, etc. And I don’t mean that we’re not having sex (okay….that’s kind of a convoluted, double-negative way to let y’all know we’re having plenty of sex…;) ). I just feel like I’m not the same, loving kind of girlfriend/wife person that I used to be. He has a box where he’s kept all the letters I wrote him while we were dating and I don’t know why we don’t do the same “little things” for each other any more.
Is there a way to bring more of this “little things” type of romance back into our lives? I’m not talking about flowers and champagne-type, roll around in bed romance (after all, studies are now actually showing that “cheap sex” is best)….I’m thinking more about the sweet, lover-ish kind of things that you do for each other when you’re first dating.
What sparked my thoughts on this? The fact that someone at work gave me a candy bar from one of those school fundraisers and I brought it home and gave it to Ducks as a treat. Sounds sweet, right? Well, it really wasn’t. I mean, it was a nice gesture, but the intent was to save it for him so I wouldn’t eat it, not to lovingly think of him and bring him something special.
Carrie, my freshman year roommate in college and I both starting dating guys around the same time. So, we’d work on little projects for them together. We’d buy Hershey’s kisses and drop them off in cute gift wrap at their dorms’ front desk so they’d get a call to come pick up a gift and feel important. We’d bake Valentine’s treats together. We made jars filled with special notes and quotes for them for the summer, since we’d be spending it apart.
Separate from the things Carrie and I made, I was also a big on writing letters. I wrote letters for every day of spring break when he went on a trip out of the country and we didn’t get to talk. Even once that we graduated from college, I’d send him little notes in the mail. But, now, I don’t know if I’m just too busy, or too stressed, or that I just take it for granted now that we’re in love; we’re married; we live in the same house; we see each other every day.
Also, I guess men don’t really think a lot about romantic gestures. I’m sure he’s not pining away to get a special note from me under his pillow. Is it just that when we grow up, we show our love in different ways — like doing laundry and packing lunches and running errands for each other? But, then, when people end up breaking up and finding new love, don’t they get all giddy from the special-ness of the relationship (don’t worry! We’re not breaking up! We’re doing great – I’m just feeling philosophical)? So, maybe they were missing that before?
I have “Little Women” practically memorized and as I’ve been thinking about this issue for the past few days, this quote came to mind from the time following Meg and John Brooke’s wedding:
“John did not find Meg’s beauty diminished, though she beamed at him from behind the familiar coffee pot. Nor did Meg miss any of the romance from the daily parting, when her husband followed up his kiss with the tender inquiry, Shall I send some veal or mutton for dinner, darling? The little house ceased to be a glorified bower, but it became a home, and the young couple soon felt that it was a change for the better. At first they played keep-house, and frolicked over it like children. Then John took steadily to business, feeling the cares of the head of a family upon his shoulders, and Meg laid by her cambric wrappers, put on a big apron, and fell to work, as before said, with more energy than discretion.”
I know that Ducks and I love each other. I know that we’re both busy people – he’s studying diligently to do well in school and improve our future. I’m working hard at work to be connected, to make money and to support us. I know that we do a lot for each other – but is it enough that we show our love by loading the dishwasher and hanging picture frames and taking the laundry upstairs? I guess the question is:
“Do couples need sweet gestures to have a great, fulfilling relationship?” Okay, discuss.