I like to say I’m not a fan of grand gestures, but that’s not so. I mean, who wouldn’t appreciate a love so deep and so wide that a significant other does something drastic to let their soul mate know how adored they are? I mean, as long as I don’t have to pick up hundreds of rose petals all by myself, I say bring on the big show of affection.
The power of the grand gesture is in the surprise. Our breaths catch in our throat because these acts let us see the force of someone’s else love for us. That’s why someone willing to bring us protein bars when we are on a new diet kick, is just as romantic as someone who brings us a box of chocolates.
Here’s how my romantic standards have changed over the years, bringing me to a place where serenades pale in comparison to poop scooping the yard so I don’t have to.
When I was first dating my husband, I liked to get flowers out-of-the-blue. Now, I like to get gallons of milk I didn’t have to pick up.
Once, my husband darted into a cotton field in some southern state so he could steal me a bole of cotton at the risk of being shot by an irate farmer. Daring and sentimental and sweet and now I’d be just as happy if he darted into traffic to retrieve my dropped iPhone.
When we were on our honeymoon, my husband defended my honor to a rude man on a beach in Barbados. Now I’d be just as smitten by his commitment to me if he took my car to be detailed and didn’t apologize for the candy wrapper stuffed into my glove box.
Love doesn’t change. We like to say it does, that love itself matures and mellows over the years, but the truth is that love never changes, our priorities do. And our bodies. Those change, so I won’t be parading around in the same nighties I might have worn on that honeymoon so many years ago. But my attraction to my long-term man is as strong as ever, and the surprises keep coming.
When he lets me sleep in, for instance, and I wake up to find that he spent that time cleaning something. When he defends my decisions, shaking his head at the rest of the world for not recognizing my genius.
Romance hasn’t died as I’ve aged. I don’t pine for candlelight dinners and love letters. I pine for naps, because nothing says “I love you” more than curling up on the couch for an hour while the person I love most takes care of everything else.