Photographs by Laurie @ Horizons Photography

May 15, 2011

The gift of love

The language of love is a tricky thing, we all have different ways of expressing our love to people, and we all have ways of seeing love from someone else. There are books that talk about it, tests you can take that tell you what your 'love language' is and what the 'love language' of those you love.

Tim's parents and and brother and sister in-law and Tim and I did these tests when Josh was a baby. My language was both gifts and quality time, Tim is service and touch. I can look back at times when my Dad would buy me a gift and say... 'it's a because I love you gift', or times when my Mom would clean my room and leave a little note on my pillow that read 'I love you' for me to find when I got home from school. You can guess what their love language is.

As I look at my children I can pick out already what their love languages are, and I have to curb my desire to buy 'I love you gifts' for them or we would be broke. Josh, he is a quality time kind of guy. He thrives under our attention and strives for our time, and he enjoys showing me he loves me by wanting my time. Kaleb, he is my little hugger, my physical touch kid. He gives hugs and kisses for no reason at all, and his favorite thing to do in the world is to cuddle up in my lap and eat up all the love I have to give him. Just the other day, when he sensed that Tim and I were feeling down he gave us abundant hugs just to let us know he loved us.

Today, after church I was feeling down, and I had a deep desire to show my kids that I love them. Kaleb was napping, Tim was watching golf. So I caved to my desire and I packed up Josh in the car and we headed out to Toys R Us so that I could lavish them with love.

Now, if you know my kids you know that the best thing in the world right now is the Cars movie and Mater's Tales. Josh has a McQueen and Mack that he loving puts to sleep each night, that he drives around all day and refuses to allow Kaleb to touch. Kaleb hates this of course and yet he knows that these are Josh's special toys so he tries his best to leave them alone. So, today, we went to the 'cars' section of the Toys R Us and we found the two remaining 'shake and Go' cars. 'Red' and 'Sarge' were the two cars they had left (it seems they are popular). Josh's face lit up when he saw them, his eyes growing huge and his smile beaming from ear to ear when I handed the two cars to him and explained that he could pick one for himself and one for Kaleb. He sat there for a while, playing with each, studying them and finally decided on Sarge for himself, leaving Red for Kaleb. We payed the cashier and got back in the car to run a few errands.

Our first stop I undid the car seat and explained that Sarge would have to stay in the car and a minor freak out happened. Then, when finished at that location we headed back to the car where he beamed again at the site of his beloved Sarge. The second stop he seemed to understand that Sarge would remain in the car, but the entire time we were in the shop his little voice went on about Mack, Sarge, Red, McQueen and cars, and when again we approached the car his little smile broke out and he happily got back in the car and said hi to Sarge as if they were long lost friends. When we got home he carried the box carrying his new possession into the house and ran up to his Daddy saying 'look'! He then went about introducing Mack and McQueen to Sarge.

Then Kaleb was given Red, and the smile on his little face was beautiful. He clung to that truck like he would never let it go. (Probably realizing he finally had his own toy that Josh wouldn't be able to play with). At dinner, we all sat at the table eating and having races across the table with the different cars to many squeals of delight.

Loving my children is a joy, and something I do regardless of what they do, but showing them that love in a way that fulfills my love language is a joy unto itself. I delight in delighting them and today I got to delight them.