My name is Emma, and I am a big romantisist, living in a world of Nicholas Sparks novels and Bloom & Wild deliveries.
When I was little, I used to have a recurring dream, it went on most nights for a few years. There would be a dark room with a handsome man chopping wood and filling up a log basket in the middle of the floor. The man, the wood and the basket were the only thing in this room and it was almost like those ever so popular boomerang clips on repeat. Then, the dream would switch and there would be a beautiful lady dressed in white dress, walking through a little room picking flowers and filling her basket. The dream would just switch between the two rooms, no dialogue at all, just wood chopping and flower picking. I’d wake up believing that was how it was meant to be, and so, in my head, I started to vision a life whereby my husband and I lived in a little cottage with a white picket fence, horses in the field and lots of children playing on the swings.
Fast forward many years and I’ve never had the dream again, but I have however, had big expections from men in my past. I expected men to constantly say sweet things to me, to constantly tell me how loved I am, I had high hopes for flowers each week (I never got them) romantic meals and holidays with sun and white sandy beaches. Now don’t think me materialistic, people who know me will know that I’m very far from that and as much as I do like nice things (who wouldn’t) I work hard for them and buy them myself just as I have always done. I supposed you could say, I wanted and craved adoration, I wanted the fairytale and felt let down if I didn’t get it.
Now I’ve done a lot of growing up, I’ve come to realise that it’s not all about over priced flowers each week that makes a man romantic, it’s not about new car keys on your birthday or spending stupid amounts of money on shit that let’s face it, we don’t need.
It’s much more than that. And it’s not just the men that should be doing these deeds. I think sometimes, as women, we get a bit of a “worship” complex, and to a degree, why not? We bleed for one week solid a month and don’t die, that’s worthy of some credit right? But why is it down to the men to be romantic, why do we think it’s down to them to make some form of grand gesture?
Now I could well be way off the mark when I say this, some women could easily be offended (it’s been nice knowing you) but just because we are more often than not, running around after the kids and keeping the house ticking over, doesn’t mean we should be thanked with a bunch of peonies for it. Does it? To me, I prefer to feel arms wrapped around me when I look tired. I like the offer of a cup of tea and most of all, I just like to hear the words “I love you”. Those simple three words can mean so much when you feel like every day life is getting on top of you. But have you ever thought that sometimes, your man needs these things too? Maybe he needs to hear a thank you for going to work and still doing the food shop on the way home, maybe he needs a hug after a tough day at work, maybe he needs you to ask how his day went instead of you getting in first and moaning about how tough you had it. It may even be the reverse in your house so don’t think me ignorant, I’m just going on how things are in MY house.
Milestone events are always the pinacle of pressure in relationships lately. Birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas and so on. Personally, I don’t need or want fancy Mulberry handbags on our anniversary, I don’t need to be given a gift. Why do I need to be rewarded for doing something that comes so easily and makes me so happy? Do I really need to be rewarded for picking up his pants off the bathroom floor for another 365 days, do I need to be given a bottle of perfume as a reward to him coming home to me every single day of the week. No. I’m happy with the smallest gesture of a card with some lovely heartfelt words in it, more importantly, I’d be ok if I didn’t get the card and he said it directly to my face (and without trying to stick his willy in me straight after). I don’t need to be rewarded for falling in love.
This year, I had a blip. I cried to one of my best friends because I felt like Paul wasn’t going to make the same amount of effort that I make for him on his birthday (for his 40th next year I’ve booked a week all incluisve in the beautiful Croatia), I stupidly felt unappreciated and taken for granted. I don’t know why, it just really bothered me this year. My friend was convinced he was going to pull something big out of the bag and be super romantic but I was adamant he wouldn’t.
Then came my birthday, he booked the day off to spend with me and I woke up to unwrap the most amazing gift I have ever recieved in my life. A massive photoframe with all of our names in it and filled with pictures of the ones who mean the most to me. My family. For me, it meant every thing because he knows how much they mean to me, how special they are and even more so after cutting off the majority, He even included a photo of my best friend who has always been so much more than that. I also unwrapped a gorgeous Pandora ring which I have started wearing on my engagement finger just for practice!
To me, that was the most romantic gesture, not the gifts, but the gift of his time. The fact that he wanted to be with me all day when he was so busy at work and snowed under with projects. And, that’s when it clicked. Being romantic isnt about the grand gestures at all. Spending hundreds of pounds on unneccessary gifts aren’t the way to my heart and they never will be.
If you have a partner who goes to work to provide a home for you and your children, that’s romantic. If you have a partner who holds your hair back for you because you drank one strawberry daquari too many, that’s romantic. If you have a partner who offers to do the next shitty nappy whilst you go and enjoy a cup of tea whilst it’s still hot, that’s romantic. If you have a partner who tells you how beautiful you are whilst you scoop shit and grit from the cat litter tray, that’s romantic. And if your partner will kiss you on the lips first thing in the morning when you have breath that could strip wallpaper, then that’s romantic.
Paul may not be one for gifts of grandure, but he is quite possibly, the most romantic man I have ever met and am lucky enough to go to bed with every night ( this blog post doesn’t mean you get to poke it in me tonight dear )
Romance is a two way street and it most certainly doesn’t cost money.
P.S, Paul I appreciate you and love you all the world now fucking hurry up and propose!