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I’ll never forget the first time he told me he loved me. It was snowy outside and we were laughing as we sat on the couch by the fire. I was giggling like crazy, just because of giddy-silly happiness.

What was I laughing at, he wanted to know.

Oh nothing, I told him, still laughing. I just like you.

(oh how we talked in code those days, putting all sorts of meanings and tones behind the word ‘like’)

And then he said it, the words slipping from his lips: I love you, too.

Since then, those three, precious little words – oh, how could I ever tire of hearing them? – have become more and more true every day. As Chantel at YLCF.org posted recently, it’s like one of my favorite country songs, “…and I thought I loved you then.”

We’ve been us, he and I, for two years now and it just keeps getting better. We aren’t perfect, he and I. We’ve seen each other angry and we’ve fought, misunderstandings making us work on communication. And I’m still learning what it will be like living with a fire-fighter, who is busy, busy, busy – and won’t fully learn it until we’re married. And he’s still figuring out how confusing the way my mind works can be even to myself. 😉 Overall it’s easy to keep our relationship watered, right now, but I’m tucking away Chantel’s words of wisdom in regards to watering our love.

…love is more about giving than it is about taking. And sometimes, loving with everything I am and have crosses me in ways that my self most certainly doesn’t like. Sometimes, I just don’t feel like it. And it’s those times when I feel the least bit like loving in that practical kind of way, that I need to pull out that watering can and do it anyway. Not because I have to, but because I choose to.

Because every single time I choose to cultivate my marriage, every time I water that plant of Love, I find that the doing really is every bit as sweet as the saying (and the hearing). And those dirty socks on the floor? I’m thankful that I have someone to pick up after, and there’s no way that I want to let a few dirty socks and a couple sweaty t-shirts steal any of the beauty and joy and happiness that sharing and cultivating our love brings to our home each day.

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