It’s there in the way you brush my hair off my face, slowly and gently, to tuck it behind my ear before leaning in to gently kiss my cheek. Your response to my constant demands for cuddles is to pull me in tight and laugh into my hair. Our first fancy date involved ice skating where I told you that you couldn’t let me fall, over three years later, you still hold me up when I lean every which way in your arms seeing if I can unbalance us. Even when you can’t cuddle me, you make sure to get one of the dogs to sit with me or you buy me the teddy bear meant for children so that I can always have a hug when I need it.
It’s there in you doing the dishes immediately after dinner, even on a night when you have to go to bed early. We talk as you wash and you listen to my concerns, validate my feelings and always answer my requests for you to talk to me by telling me that you love me. You voice your fears about work, we share our dreams for the future, and bear this burden of life together.
It’s there in you asking me to kill bad guys with you. Even though we both know I’m not the greatest at video games. I’m pretty sure that I still spend just as much time shooting the ground or you as I do the actual bad guys. It was definitely a smart move on your part to pick a game where my shooting you heals you. At least you can’t say you didn’t know my poor gaming skills prior to marriage, I did shoot the hostages with a grenade launcher less than two weeks in to dating you. But you still ask and we still play. Even when I get frustrated and threaten to quit. Even when we die fighting Hyperious the Invincible for the sixth time in one session. You share the chests with me, always defaulting to me if we can’t remember who opened the last one and you split the loot with me too. You even let me run around and do the boring parts that I enjoy because they’re easy without complaint.
It’s there in you taking me out to eat for the second night in a row just after we’ve finished a conversation about being better at eating at home. Even though we both know that sentiment should really just be aimed at me. You calmly remind me that we can start being good tomorrow and take me out for a quick meal. You patiently deal with piles of laundry that never quite seem to get put away and quietly move the stacks of piano books that collect in random points of the house as I teach. There’s never accusation that I should do more or do better, you just remind me that you never meant to marry a housewife and that I’m okay as I am.
It’s there in you walking the dogs with me after a ten hour shift, after working out, after playing a softball game even though you’re dead tired and just want to curl up on the couch. We’ve tried every brand of being active together. I was a health risk on the racquetball court and our work out styles just don’t mesh into spotting for each other. But walking the dogs, sometimes talking together and sometimes not, that’s always something we do. You spray me down with bug spray so I don’t get bit, carry the keys and the poop bags so I don’t have to deal with pockets, and adjust the rings on my fingers so they don’t poke you while we hold hands.
It’s there in every little thing you do.