One evening, my boyfriend Ben handed me a box with a picture of us on the front of it. Inside the box was a puzzle that, once assembled, was the same picture on the front of the box. Except for one small difference: There was a diamond ring on my finger in the picture on the puzzle! Once I placed that puzzle piece in its spot, he knelt down on one knee and proposed to me!
Even though I looked like Scott Baio with my short hair sticking up all over my head, he made me feel like the most beautiful woman in the world! After a few moments, through the tears and in euphoria, I finally was able to say yes!
It meant the world to me that he planned an entire night to focus on our love for one another. All the magazines and television shows I had seen growing up had me believing love was passionate, heated, and filled with grand gestures. His proposal will always have a special place in my heart because it was everything I envisioned romance to be.
After we got married and had kids, I started to feel like romance had taken a back seat. Ben would surprise me with flowers every once in awhile, but I never felt the passion and excitement I had felt the night we became engaged. I stressed about what things I could do to kindle our passion again. I felt like we were doing something wrong. Then one night I realized that romance was about so much more than grand gestures. Life isn’t always a fairy tale, but that doesn’t mean our story isn’t happily ever after.
My husband might not always be dramatic, but he shows how deeply and passionately he loves me every day. I find so much romance in every kiss we share before he leaves for work. Or when he brings me hot tea with a little honey because he knows I need it to help unwind at night. I find so much passion in our relationship when he brings his jacket along when we go out because he knows I’ll get cold—even though I refuse to bring a coat for myself because I know the movie theater won’t be as cold this time!
He always opens the door as we walk into a building and holds it open for me. He cares enough to notice when my hands are sore from taking care of the house and will take the time to massage them for me. And I know every Saturday he’ll make breakfast for our family! Some of the most tender moments are when we are laying in bed about to go to sleep and the only thing in the world that matters to him is to make me laugh a few more times before we drift off to dream.
Our relationship has matured through the years and so has my views on what it means to show someone you love them. The big moments matter, but so do the little things my husband continues to do for our family and me. Instead of being mundane, our daily routines have become a sanctuary. We’ve found that when it comes to our relationship, it’s the smallest things that mean the most in keeping the romance alive.