I once heard a story of a young math professor who came home from work and greeted his fiancée with a little blue box from Tiffany. "This is a present for you, honey. But to get it, you have to tell me why I'm giving it to you today instead of any other day." She wracked her brain; it was still over three months till their anniversary and over five months till their marriage. It wasn't her birthday or a holiday or anything else she could come up with, but she knew her betrothed, and she started thinking about how he did things. And then she got it.
"We met each other exactly 1000 days ago."
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"Of course we did, darling. And I've loved every last one of them." And he gave her the diamond bracelet.
I love this story; to me, it represents exactly the kind of romance that I believe in: the combination of feeling and showing. If I had to define romance as anything, I'd call it extra—it's the impulse, spurred on by sentiment, to add a little something, to try a little harder, to do one more thing as a sign of the love you have for the other person. From the kiss he gives you before he leaves the room, to taking his hand on the subway, to learning her shoe size on the sly so you can surprise her with Prada mules, romance is about paying enough attention and knowing the other person well enough that you can send proof of your love in a way that he or she will really understand. Which Love Language Do You Speak?
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Next: Paying attention and seeing things from the other's perspective...
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