I'm linking up with Andrea today for Show & Tell Tuesday. The topic this morning is "How to Win My Heart."
My husband and I do not celebrate Valentine's Day (I'm sure that's a shock to some of you out there.) We're of the tribe that believes that Valentine's Day is a holiday to spur spending copious amounts of money on cards, chocolates and roses. (A dozen roses costs half as much in June as in February.) We like to celebrate each other and our bond on our random date nights or with random fun things we do together, rather than by spending lots of money on one day of the year.
When we were dating, I told him I didn't want anything for Valentine's Day and his friends didn't believe him when he told them so. But, he listened, and he didn't get me anything, and I didn't get him anything either. And we made it! It wasn't a test to see if he'd really show up at my house with balloons and chocolates and flowers. Nope. I was honest in saying that I didn't want anything, and he listened.
The first Valentine's Day we came upon after marriage, we broke our rules and decided to get gifts for each other. It was nice and fun, but I think both of us felt like the gift-giving was a bit forced. Later on that day, we decided to keep things how we originally intended them to be-- and forgo celebrating Valentine's Day. In fact, one year, we attempted to go out to dinner and we couldn't figure out why there were lines outside each restaurant until it dawned on us that it was Valentine's Day! So we turned around and went home, and we went out to eat the next night instead. :)
Now, for my boys, I want them to decide for themselves one day whether they want to celebrate this holiday or not. So, for now, we will get them each a small treat and a sweet card. This is something my parents always did for me and my brothers and I want to continue that tradition for my boys. Also, I see nothing wrong with sprucing up the house with some bursts of pink and red here and there! (I'll be writing a Valentine's Day Decorating Details post next week!)
So, onto the real question of this post: How to Win My Heart. A few months ago, my husband and I each took the online version of "The 5 Love Languages" quiz. I totally recommend that everyone take this quiz, even if you're not in a relationship! It is really helpful to know how you love and how you like to be shown love. My top two love languages were "Words of Affirmation" and "Quality Time." Aaron's were "Physical Touch" and "Gift Receiving." You guys-- this could not make more sense! After we took this quiz, I really understood that we perceive love so differently! And we didn't take this quiz until we had been married 6 years!
Our results made total sense to me. I am definitely so appreciative of quality time spent together. Whether this be a family vacation and enjoying each other on the journey, or if it simply means sitting next to each other on the couch on a random weekday night watching a show together or playing a game (this one is really fun!). And I can tell you something-- watching "American Sniper" together will surely make you love your spouse more (well, I guess I can't speak for everyone, but it made me love my spouse more). My other main love language was Words of Affirmation. This is so true. I want to know that I'm doing a good job. I want my husband to say that he's proud of me. Let's face it, we've got a tough life. We're very young parents of a young child with an incurable disease. It's rough! So I do like to know that my husband notices the work I do for my child (endless phone calls with insurance companies, and medical suppliers, and midnight blood sugar checks, and intricately taping on a medical device so that curious three-year-old hands can't rip it off, etc). And when my husband says he's proud of me, that makes my whole day. It makes all the sleepless nights, worry over this disease, and frustrations exhibited during phone calls worth it. It does. Just a simple phrase-- "I'm proud of you"-- can win my heart each and everyday, just as much as a good evening of quality time can do the same.
Aaron's results were "Physical Touch" and "Gift Receiving." This really opened up my eyes to see how he perceives love. A good back rub, or shoulder massage can mean more to him than saying the words "I love you." And now his love language of "Gift Receiving" is at the forefront of my mind when I'm shopping at Target, etc. If he's had a bad day at work, I'll pick up a bag of Reese's peanut-butter cups and a movie and I'll place it on his pillow for him to see when he goes to the bedroom to change out of his work clothes. This could even be as simple as making a batch of his favorite cookies one night after we tuck our boys into bed. Knowing his love languages has also made me more perceptive to realize when he's showing love to me. He might choose to acknowledge his own love languages as a way to express his love for me. He might give me a back rub or shoulder massage even if I haven't asked for one-- and I have to acknowledge internally that he is showing love, even if it's not specifically quality time or words of affirmation.
Taking the love language quiz really has changed how I view his love, and it's changed how I show love to him in order to make it most effective and to really let him know that I love him. Oh, believe me, I say "I love you" about a thousand times a day and he always says it back (and he does say it first, too). But to know how to effectively show love to my spouse is such a fantastic gift. We do have the book "The 5 Love Languages" but taking the online quiz is so simple, quick, and effective.
So quality time and words of affirmation are really the keys to winning my heart, and my spouse knows this and acknowledges it.
Such a great link-up topic! What do you think? What are the ways to win your heart?
Until Next Time,
Much love, Reba