The twelve days of Christmas aren't even over and Valentine's stuff is on the shelves!!! AARGH. The only good thing about this is that it reminds me of roses and candy and...
When I was in college, I was dating a boy who I knew deep down was not the right one for me. But, I was insecure, I was a mess, and I wanted desperately to get married and create a safe haven for myself. I thought I had found it with him. The problem was, though, that the buried knowledge of the unrightness of it all kept popping up and causing rifts in the relationship. One of those was that I felt he wasn't romantic enough. Someone who REALLY loved me would do grand romantic gestures. At the time, I referred to this as "roses and Godiva chocolates". The right kind of guy would be the one who left roses and Godiva chocolates on your pillow just because he loved you. Once I told him, he dutifully brought me these, but, of course, they weren't enough because HE wasn't enough. I just wasn't ready to admit it.
Fast forward a number of years. It's what a friend calls "damn-it o'clock in the morning" and Spouse and I have just done the last of numerous loads of vomit covered items. The girls have the flu in tandem and we have spent hours comforting, wiping, washing, and remaking cribs. We have finally gotten the bug under control and the girls have fallen into an exhausted sleep in one crib while the bedding for the other is whirling its way dry. Spouse and I have fallen onto our own bed, waiting for the dryer to stop and we drift into sleep. Then the timer beeps and I am so tired that it makes me want to cry to think of getting up and pulling the stuff out and making the bed.
In a romance novel, this is where the wonderful husband says, "You go to sleep. I'll finish up," and we all sigh and say, "Awwww, that is SO SWEET." My reality, though, is that Spouse has a physical disability. Most of what we humans do on a daily basis is extremely hard for him. On this particular night, he could have stayed put and let me do all the work because it was really difficult for him to do it.
He didn't, though. He scraped his share of smelly sheets, and when he couldn't physically do something, he stayed there and kept me company. When we were finally done, and both girls were in sweet smelling jammies and comfortably in their own beds, and when I had changed into my own clean jammies and we were comfortably in our own bed, he rubbed my aching back until we fell asleep.
When our girls walk down the aisle, I will have him next to me in the church and we will remember all of these times. We'll remember the Night of Living Vomit, and all those Christmas Eves where we stayed up until all hours making memories for our kids, and first loves, and graduations, and...well, you get the idea. What I won't remember is whether he ever brought me roses and Godiva chocolates.