Baby, it's cold outside ( but it's warm in here)
21st of December was a GOOD day, I received an email to say I had been chosen to take part in The Great Wake Up experience. This is my first challenge, telling one person each day for four days what I love about them.
I thought this was an excellent first experiment- it being the so called season of goodwill. I was full of romantic ideas about this experiment however in reality I found this incredibly difficult which made me question why? My conclusion is that I come from a large family where “I love you” was not said out aloud. That said I never doubted for a second that I was loved by my parents or my older siblings. Our love was not 'verbal', it was rather more hugs and kisses and spending time together. Being the youngest of six by eleven years I am sure there were times when my presence was a pain in the bum but I was always felt loved. My parents were brought up in the 30's and in comparison to a childhood in the 70's it was incredibly tough. For example my Dad was sent away to work when he was 14 to another country where he had to learn the language. He loved us the best he could and better than he was loved. He provided a home and financial stability, my Mam gave us her time and energy. So I see now that although we as a family don't express our love verbally we are demonstrative so when I touch someone’s hand when they are talking or cook them a nourishing meal that is me showing my love.
So, getting back to the task in hand, I decided the first person on my hit list would be my fiancé. He works away a lot and we still live in separate houses, and the last two years have been tough without going into details- I feel like the walls of our relationship have been rocked but the foundations are still strong. He was home for Christmas and I popped over for a cup of tea, we sat at the table and I had full intentions of telling him what I loved about him. My mouth went dry and I realised I was afraid of his reaction and of feeling foolish. It actually took me a few attempts to do this exercise, well, ok then five. I think he thought I was trying to break it off with him – so much was my stumbling. Finally on New Year’s Eve I did it. We’d booked a little seaside escape away for the night. The journey there was a bit grim the weather had closed in on the mountain pass we were taking, the radio had stopped working in the pick -up, so to cheer us up I found an old Bon Jovi cd in the glove compartment and it was so cold I had already started to sip the small bottle of sloe gin I had brought to warm us for midnight fireworks on the beach. So in a little pub surrounded by happy shiny people with a little dutch courage I told the man I love why I loved him. He in return talked about a family tragedy which he has never opened up to me about before. That night it felt that the tough time we’d experienced had evaporated and I suddenly felt light again and full of hope. The next morning we shared breakfast and took a chilly walk along the beach- if this experiment taught me anything it is to take a risk and open up your heart, the rewards far outweigh the risk.