Monday, October 19, 2015

Why I am okay with my husband not bringing me flowers

Early into my courtship with the young man who would become my husband, I was told three things.

First, he would never get me anything from a "list".  He hated the idea of giving a predictable gift. 

Second, he would be a work-a-holic like his dad. He planned on working as many hours as possible and successful in his career.

Lastly, he wouldn't buy me flowers on Valentine's day.  They raised the prices so much on that day it was just a rip off.

None of my husband's predictions turned out to be true (Praise God!!), but they did set my expectations.  He was a romantic at heart (see number one), but practical at the same time (see number three).  As it turns out, the only two days I ever (and still only rarely) get flowers is on Valentine's Day and our Anniversary.  Maybe Mother's Day if he is also ordering them for his Mother and Grandmother.  And I am really okay with that.  

After a few years of marriage, I realized (among other things) that if I wanted flowers, I was going to have to make it really obvious.  Being passive aggressive, I devised a strategy of
putting the empty vase on the counter when I was feeling a little needy in the floral department.  That worked for a while. I was subtle, but I am sure at some point we had an actual conversation which ended with my husband laughing at my passive aggressiveness.  

We moved to Oregon for a short-term assignment and I found myself shocked at how much cheeper flowers were there!  I was in a little apartment with my only little guy and my husband worked late. I don't even think we had any vases because we were in corporate housing for the stay.  I would put the flowers in a carafe. It worked.  But the carafe on the counter wasn't the same. The trip was really hard emotionally (read about that here) and flowers were cheep so I just started buying them myself.  For just a few bucks I could get amazing blooms for our dreary little place! It was a treat every time I went to the grocery and I just built it into the budget.

Returning back home I found that I had developed a little habit while in the great green Northwest. Flowers here weren't cheep and they certainly weren't something that I could buy each shopping trip.  So I stopped buying them and I would just look at them longingly each time I passed them in the aisle.  My husband started getting me flowers for those special occasions and saw the joy they brought to my face.  But I really think women - okay maybe just me - need flowers more often than just a few times a year.  

So I started buying flowers when I needed a little pick me up, and then thanking him for them.  I would send him a photo with a "Thanks for the flowers honey! They are so beautiful!" and he would respond with a smilie face.  My daughters now love going to the store with me when I decide that their Daddy is buying us flowers.  With the craziness of four kids and soccer and piano and gymnastics and everything else going on I just can't expect my husband to know when I want flowers.  He is not going to read my mind. He isn't going to notice the vase on the cluttered counter.  He is powering through day after day, and we are so thankful when we can sit down together with a glass of wine once the kids are finally tucked in. During the witching hour I usually am barely holding on and would really rather have him home than at the store picking up a bouquet!

I buy myself flowers and I attribute the gift to him, because I know that he wants to bring me that joy. He doesn't have to make getting flowers his priority.  His role is to provide (flower money), and protect me, and love me in his own way. And that is why I am okay with my husband not bringing me flowers.

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