On Valentine’s Day, you might not receive a grand display of love or an eloquent tribute on social media. And though you know that the day is overhyped in general, perhaps you feel a bit disappointed. Or feel that someone else is having a better Valentine’s Day than you are. Sometimes your spouse does not “speak your love language.” They may have no idea how to pick a gift that you’ll enjoy, or might not have the money for it. Maybe they think what you’d like for Valentine’s Day is frivolous.
They might not know how to put their love into the words that let you know exactly how they feel about you, or might not be comfortable sharing those words with everyone on your “friends list.” Or maybe, they just plain forgot about February 14th, and you feel unloved and underappreciated. Maybe you haven’t felt connected to them in awhile; things seem distant between the two of you so the idea of celebrating Valentine’s Day seems “meh.”
How do you really know that your spouse loves you? It might not be what you think:
♥ Love is dealing with the unwanted spider or the clogged toilet.
♥ Love is saying, “I’ll make the kids’ breakfast, you should sleep in today.”
♥ Love is watching the other’s favorite tv show and not just tolerating it, but remembering details about its characters and plot.
♥ Love is letting the other have the bigger half of the chocolate chip cookie.
♥ Love is holding back what they REALLY wanted to say and letting you be heard.
♥ Love is saying, “I’m sorry. I was wrong.”
♥ Love is knowing you won’t always see eye-to-eye, but remembering “you are not my enemy. We’re on the same team.”
♥ Love is faithfulness in a world where it is so easy to stray.
♥ It is the daily tasks done without complaining, comments that show they’re listening, a thoughtful post-it note, a funny text message.
♥ It is saying, “I see who you really are– your imperfections, your weaknesses, your downfalls– and I still choose you.”
♥ It is facing the many uncertainties of life with, “I don’t know, but we’ll figure it out together.”
If you have these things (or things like them) with someone else, they are more valuable than the perfect caption for a post. More valuable than anything you could ever buy and wrap with a ribbon.
Our spouse will never love us “perfectly.” But we will never love them the way they fully deserve to be loved, either. We will fail each other, sometimes quite badly. What if you don’t see anything in your relationship like the things mentioned above? Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to try one (or several) of the items above and see how your spouse responds. They may respond positively, or they may choose not to. But the key is that you tried something different. It’s what we do after we fail to love our spouse well that shows who we are and what kind of love we have.
Mother Theresa is quoted as saying, “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” Love is found in the small, daily interactions we have. Look for the good in your spouse, in the small things they do and say. You might just be more loved than you think. ♥
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