February is the one month where romance is the number one topic whether you are a romantic or not, it is in your face and we are forced to have a position about it. Some go to an extent of giving us the history of Valentino and others feel the need to explain why they do not celebrate.
So one of the ladies from mzansi wives as the name suggests the group is for married ladies, asked my thoughts on the romance topic and so I thought I should share with you.
The first think that came to mind was who set the standard for “Romantic Love”? was it Valentino?soapies? or romantic movies? what is romance? Is it not romantic when he makes me tea instead of buying chocolates? Is it not romantic when he massages my swollen feet instead of light up candles in the bedroom?
Most of us will agree that putting the kids to bed and paying the mortgage do not count as romantic but both these two are very important right. In fact if he does not do these two they will affect the romance in your marriage. When we neglect the responsibilities that come with marriage and just be happy that atlas we still make love once or twice a week, you will find that the once and twice a week will become zero. On the other hand you can take care of the finances pay the bills but if you don’t send a sexy text, no spank on the bum when you walk passed each other, this can also lead to a dying sex life. In short, there has to be a balance. Acknowledge the things we are good at and work on the things we struggle with. My husband is my best friend he sees me at my worst and best he knows my fears and my weaknesses. But he is much more than that. Most women after a few years of marriage settle for having someone pay the bills, love his children and once in a while attend to their needs. If he is demoted to just a friend, father, who will fulfil the role of romance in your life? suppose it is a genuine need that God created us with.
I’m not discounting the value of strong friendship remember you can’t communicate without connecting (you’ll talk past each other) but I believe romance is biblical. Yes, check out the songs of Solomon. One of my favourite verses:
Songs of solomon 1:2 may he kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! for your love is better than wine
Song of solomon 7:10 I am my beloveds and his desire is for me
So when Dumile asked what I thought about romance in marriage I laughed and told Sweet-One because earlier that day I was asking him konje why don’t we celebrate valentines again? And of cause he said you know why, we do not need a day to celebrate one another. What I said to him is but I think the reason why I’m asking is because its been a while, so just like me most women feel if a year passes without getting flowers we end up having to make a big deal out this day because that would be our only chance to be appreciated.
The moral of the story is I would be lying if I said I didn’t like getting flowers nee ngabanye abantwana (like other kids). My husband’s love language is quality time (we share this one) and acts of service hence he drifts towards this one most of the time when he shows appreciation and he knows I like getting gifts he is not good at this one because it’s not his love language. Love to me is when someone gets out of their comfort zone to try to communicate love to me the best way he knows I will appreciate. When this happens I automatically want to do something for him, because I understand how much it took from him. So sometimes it’s a good thing that we don’t share all our love languages because it forces us to go the extra mile for the ones we love.
Growing up pastor Thwala used to teach about different types of love (Agape-unconditional/
The challenge becomes the expectation that it will come packaged the way it is in the movies. Let’s dig deeper and see romance in the things they do that no one else can do for us. See romance in the hand written note that just says “you are best gift I have ever received” or the meal he cooked for you. It is not just the weekend aways and spa days but the look in his eyes when you walk into the room.
Let us communicate our expectations but also appreciate the effort they make. Because romance is not one sided both parties must define romance in line with what makes them feel appreciated. On karaoke night I was upset because Sweet-One didn’t want to sing with me, but I eventually sang by myself because that was my love gesture to him and he appreciated it. Point is romance is beautiful when it is voluntary not forced resist the temptation to compare.
Let me know your thoughts, what is romantic to you?
Please check out Basetsana Kumalo’s instagram post of the renewal of their vows, the post motivated me to be write this blog post. Most people have lost hope in romantic love in marriages, her post just confirms that marriage is beautiful and romance still exists.