With Valentines on the horizon, we wanted to share stories from some amazing bloggers about what love really means to them. The first is from Louise Turner who writes at www.allthecampinggear.co.uk, which features tales of their not-so-successful family camping adventures
To give you some context, on 19 February we'll have been together 14 years. I was 19 when we met, he was 27. He's been my husband for nearly nine years and it took me about six of those to accept that he doesn't really do romance. I can count on one hand the number of times he's bought me flowers from a florist (as opposed to from the supermarket, when I might need another hand and maybe a foot to count them), he's never whisked me away for the weekend (although I have done it for him) and he didn't even propose properly - we got engaged during an argument. Best not to ask. But despite this, I know he loves me. I feel it every day. I know it to be true because of the things he does for me. The cooking, the cleaning, the dropping and picking up of children, the support for my new business and the unwavering confidence that I can make it. He even washes my car (and not just because he egged me on to get a black one).
I read somewhere that there are a number of love languages. I express my love physically (not like that, we've been married nearly nine years!) through cuddles and touching, and also through words. He expresses love through his practical support and the occasional lovely comment. So while I yearn for romance and would love to have a story to tell our children about how he got down on one knee and declared his undying love, I know that for us, love is our mutual support for one another and our determination to get through anything together. Love is a home-cooked meal when I'm working late, love is support for me going away for nine days to work, love is knowing our children are safe, loved and looked after while I'm spending all my spare hours making a success of my business. Love is a magazine, a glass of wine and being left alone in the bath for an hour on the rare occasions I feel like a soak.
So while I wouldn't complain at having a bit more romance in my life, I'll settle for the amazing, unwavering support that he gives me every single day. Because daily romance would probably get a bit boring, wouldn't it?