marriage · writing

What Romance Really Isn’t


We went to bed at eight o’clock Sunday night.

Not for any reason other than I’d already been in bed all day battling flu-like symptoms no doubt shared with me by my flu-ridden preschooler. We’ve been married fifteen years this summer and while the romance is plenty alive, there’s also many a time we go to bed early, and he puts in earbuds to watch a show he likes and I read a dogeared paperback I bought at the library book sale.

Last night I curled into his side because I was cold and my head hurt and even though I wanted to go to sleep, I wanted to talk more. About nothing. He told me about this show he’s been binging on Netflix about thieves who stick it to the rich, and I told him in Once Upon a Time, he’d be Robin Hood.

He laughed because he knows Regina is my fave (I gush about that a little bit here), and because we both know it’s true. He’s the one who sacrifices, who always believes, who never loses hope.

He’s the reason I know what romance really is–and what it really isn’t.

Romance isn’t always the big gesture. Most of the time it’s the mundane, everyday endurance of doing the small things over and over. Like making the coffee. 

Romance isn’t always candles and roses. Sometimes it’s energy saving lightbulbs and seedlings because the house got bigger and so did the bills and he still wants to save for an anniversary trip.

Romance isn’t always the handwritten love note. A card, carefully plucked from the masses, that probably took him his entire lunch break to choose, truly is as meaningful.

Romance isn’t a fancy dinner. It’s being surrounded by our little people and having a backup when I say no and they beg for yes, then doing the dishes, and falling into bed beside each other for that Netflix binge and sharing the hidden cookies.

Romance isn’t just for Valentine’s Day or anniversaries or birthdays. It’s for the each day rise and fall and fight and love and do it all over again. 

Romance is the choice.

And I’m so very glad he chose me.


Here’s one of my favorite posts about Valentine’s Day:

Mardi Gras, Aqua Notes, and Marriage

Aqua notes… still our favorite form of (mis)communication.

And this post usually tops the list of blog favorites:

What Makes a Marriage

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