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Isn’t that the best Valentines Day gift ever?
Better than boxes of chocolates.
A romantic dinner.
A dirty weekend in Paris.
No, you don’t understand me, IT. IS.
Oh who am I fooling, even my wife has only spent one Valentine’s Day with me in the last 10 years – and it’s not this year because she’s in Sydney while I’m back in Shanghai – so I may as well accept it, go home and eat a Pot Noodle for one.
But before I do that, I need to write a bit more.
Not because I think you want it … not because I think you’ll read it … but after almost 2 weeks of silence, I have stuff to say and what I want to say is LOVE IS AWESOME.
I know that might sound soppy, but I don’t care, it is a great thing.
Not the Hollywood version that  never happens and  is full of people who marry, divorce and marry someone else all within a period of a week, I mean real love – the sort available to all of us.
Of course there are many types of love …
Romantic … family … friends … activities … moments … but at the heart of them all, it’s when you are sharing them with someone of significance that they get taken to a whole new level.
Sharing is often misunderstood.
It’s not about doing things 50:50. Sure, it would be in a perfect World – but for me, it’s simply the desire to share your time, mind and life to make the other person happy.
I’ve written before how I sort-of freaked out when I met Jill because this wonderful woman actively wanted to take my stresses and concerns away.
I had got so used to having to deal with that shit by myself, that I couldn’t understand why someone would openly want to help and I have to admit, I had a hard time trying to let go because I was worried it would all fall apart if I wasn’t there to closely hold it together.
But I did and it didn’t.
And the reason for that was she cared about my well-being and wanted to share the responsibility of that.
Of course, it only works if the feelings, actions and emotions are mutual … but when they are, that’s what love is and why it is the most wonderful thing in the world … something that can change your World both in the present and the future in ways you never even contemplated as possible.
And that is why I don’t like Valentine’s Day.
I actually think it is the opposite of what love is about.
Not just because for men, it’s a day that is ultimately driven by fear – the fear of not doing something so their wife or girlfriend gets upset – but because love is not in the big gestures, but in the small.
A life of flowers, chocolates, dinners and presents might sound wonderful, but I’d hate it.
I’d much rather have a life where I want to spend my time with the person I’m with and have them want to spend it with me.
A life where the conversations we have are open and broad.
A life where the adventures and experiences we have help form a bond that is deeper and more impenetrable by the day.
A life where ultimately, you care about their well-being and they care about yours.
A life of generously small acts.
That’s what love is. At least for me.
Which is a good job, because my wife has pissed off to Sydney and I’ll be spending it at home burning copies of Love Actually.
Whoever you’re with, take care of them and let them take care of you and may it be an unhappy Valentines day but a happy day for the rest of your life.
PS: From Monday, we will never refer to love – or this post – again.
PPS: I once wrote a post about Love Actually and how some scientists had said its multiple story lines could drive people’s brains to ‘breaking point’. I remember because basically every women in the office slagged me off for their favourite film. I wanted to link this post to that, but it’s gone. Literally disappeared. I went through EVERY post I wrote last year and it’s not there. I don’t know how it’s disappeared other than someone deleted it but I don’t know how that is possible, so if anyone casually comes across it – please let me know as it is literally freaking me out. Thanks.
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