Thursday, February 26, 2009
I grew up with a family of huggers. Not tree huggers. People huggers. We hugged each other every day at least once. My parents always gave goodbye hugs when we left for school and goodnight hugs before sleep.
After we'd mow our dad's knees over with hugs when he'd come in from work, we'd plop down in the floor and help him tug his cowboy boots off. Fond memories. My family showed love by affection. Especially my mother who is the most loving person I know.
Enter dashing Rocker Dude twenty-something years later...
I fell flat on my heart in love with his contagious grin, kind brown eyes and hilarious sense of humor. He remodeled a 1200 square foot home and built onto it by the sweat of his brow until it became 4000 square feet...plenty of room for all the babies that came later. The teething rings did come after the wedding rings, but once we got married however, I began to doubt my husband's love. He never showed affection. Never hugged. Never held my hand. Of course he didn't really do that sort of thing before we got married either. But he served me. Sometimes without me knowing it. Him and a friend sneaked to another of my friend's house and, in the middle of the night, built a wheelchair ramp for her disabled son. We only found out about it because neighbors described his work truck and he fessed up.
I'd work midnights at the hospital and come out to find every nurse's vehicle in the parking lot COVERED with ice and snow...and my windshield scraped clear with one red rose and a hilarious greeting card from Rocker Dude stuck in the windshield wiper. My nurse friends scraped their windshields in frenzy while eyeing my car in envy and spouting, "You'd better hang on to that guy. You'd better not let that one get away. Any guy who gets up and four a.m. to scrape your windshield deserves a chance. You should give him one."
I'm SO glad I did.
I had a friend (Pammer James) and her family visit. After observing my husband and I interact for a couple days, Pammer said, "He loves you quietly, doesn't he?"
That hit me like a two-by-four. This man might have a hard time with hugs. But he knows what it means to serve. He wasn't raised with huggers. It dawned on me that we love how we are taught. His family serves one another and does tasks and projects to show their affection. That's how he grew up knowing love from his parents and how his parents displayed love for one another. Home-improvement projects. Landscaping. Etc. So that's how he learned to love.
My rocker dude might not hug, but I have a gorgeous window-fronted twenty-by-thirty foot sunroom that houses a library for my book addiction and a gym for all the equipment I don't use near enough and a beautiful desk for writing--a dream he supports and champions--that is an obvious testament to his love. A breathtaking corner gas log that he and his dad installed. A comfy sectional for family time that houses side-by side recliners where we spend time in each other's company and which is my favorite spot to write.
Hubby says he built this sunroom for me to have a place to come retreat to and write in peace. I actually think he subconsciously built it as a PMS Shelter for Men and plans to check himself into it when all our daughters turn teenagers at once. HA! But for now, I'll enjoy the view out of my gorgeous sunroom which lends a view of the deck he built, the fence he fashioned, and the massive swingset playhouse fort he and my dad and his dad constructed for our children. True love. His music may be loud but his love is quiet. I don't so much miss the hugs anymore. Besides, after eleven years together, he's finally starting to lift his hands and do this sort of bend-arms-at-the-elbow and pat-pat-pat my back. Not quite a hug...but we're getting there. :-)
In the meantime, I'll relish his servant's heart and his loud music and his quiet love and try my best to learn the best ways to love him back.
And now...time NOT to be quiet. I would LOVE to hear how you love best to be loved. Don't be shy! Chat away.