Love is not always about traveling to extravagant hotels, sprinkling the bedsheets with rose petals, slipping on an engagement ring and wedding band. Love is not always loud and in your face. Love is subtle on most days. Quiet. Tiptoeing. Soft.
Any couple can make grand gestures on holidays and anniversaries. It’s the moments in between that matter the most.
Sometimes, love is clasping hands while strolling through grocery aisles, snagging the right brand of cereal and k-cups for each other without having to ask, falling into a routine where you can communicate without saying a word.
Sometimes, love is constructing Ikea furniture together, folding laundry side-by-side, washing silverware and handing the handful to your person to dry. Sometimes love is about mundane moments, everyday chores, domestic duties.
Sometimes, love is reflexively changing the radio station when a song plays your person hates, instinctively scooting to the side in bed to give your person more space, automatically sending a text to check in when it’s been slightly too long since you’ve heard from them. It’s knowing what your person needs without being told.
Sometimes, love is sharing your leftovers, giving your person a taste of your mixed drink (or switching with them when they happen to like your drink more), ordering an extra pack of fries because you know they are going to end up hungry later even though they keep claiming they are fine right now. It’s sharing with them even when unprompted, even when unnecessary.
Sometimes, love is scribbling a silly sketch and pinning it to the fridge in the hopes of making your person smile in the morning, sending little GIFs and heart emojis throughout the work day to remind them how much you miss them, calling during breaks or on your car ride home to hear their voice because it’s the only thing that brings you comfort. It’s putting effort into making sure they feel loved every second, every day.
Sometimes, love is snuggling onto shoulders during train rides home, resting hands on thighs during long road trips, squeezing sweaty palms on planes. It is touching feet under dinner tables, sitting arm-to-arm on couches, clutching the backs of jackets when fighting your way through a crowd. It is putting your hands on each other in some way, in any way, to remind them they are not alone.
Sometimes, love is chauffeuring each other to doctor appointments, making each other laugh in waiting rooms where there is pin-drop silence, cleaning up tissues scattered across the house without saying a word. It is taking action to help the other person feel better without being asked, without being guided.
Sometimes, love is snapping weird selfies together that will never see the light of day, watching cartoons together from your childhood un-ironically, eating snacks advertised toward little kids instead of having something healthy, something ‘adult’. It is allowing yourself to act playful, allowing your inner child to run loose.
Sometimes, love is sharing headphones to watch a YouTube video in public without being overheard, sharing deodorant when you are out of your own brand, sharing a jacket when you are standing in the freezing cold and the two of you can snuggly fit inside. It is bringing the phrase what’s mine is yours to life.
Sometimes, love is spreading on opposite ends of the couch with a book and a laptop in companionable silence. Sometimes, love is eating dinner or driving to a restaurant without having to speak. Sometimes, love is unspoken — but it is never unheard.