I once went to a work Christmas Party with Valiant Husband, where I met one of his co-workers and his wife. She stood by grinning as her husband told us all about the Advent Calendar he'd made just for her. He'd constructed it out of wood so it could be used again, and in it he'd built 25 drawers containing 25 days of presents. Real presents, not Hershey Kisses and lollipops like we do for kids, but things like books, theater tickets and diamond earrings. Yeah, my jaw dropped.
Then again, Valiant Husband's best friend once gave his wife spatulas for her birthday. Kitchen spatulas. Nothing else. Yep.
Those are two ends of the Romance Spectrum, aren't they?
Valiant Husband falls somewhere in the middle. He's not a huge flowers and hearts guy. In fact, one Valentine's Day, frustrated by several unremarked years in a row, I sent myself roses. The card read:
To: Valiant Husband, to give to Deb
He has had his great moments. I still have the tiny Teddy Bear he gave me as we left for the hospital to welcome Eldest into the world. Someday I'll tell you guys the story of the electronic poem and the emerald ring hidden in the Christmas tree.
But more than these occasional flashes of brilliance, I treasure the everyday care that he gives me and our boys. Valiant Husband can fix anything. He's our tech support. He was the Dad who never hesitated to change a diaper and I never had to worry about leaving him alone with the kids. He shares his (many) hobbies and gives enthusiastic support to ours. He is utterly calm and patient when giving driving lessons. He'll pick up dinner any time I have just one more scene to get to. Yesterday morning I told him, "Today's the day. I finish the book today or you have to shoot me." He laughed and went to work, but later he texted me to say he was coming home early to take Youngest to practice so that I could work.
I'm old enough now to know that this what real romance looks like. I love Valiant Husband and I'd rather have his unfailing support every day than a fabulous gift once a year.
I'm also old enough to know that I'll take both if I can get them. :-)
What about you? Where does your significant other fall on the Romance Spectrum? Where do you fall?