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Life Chez Dee Episode #101: All you need is love

It’s Sunday 14th February. Valentine’s Day. Today is all about love.

The shops are full of cards, flowers, chocolates and much more, and don’t get me wrong I love all that, and both myself and Justin have always celebrated this day. To be honest, it isn’t just because it is Valentine’s Day, but it is indeed another excuse to go and buy gifts for each other and write down another declaration of love cards for each other.

Justin has always been the romantic, and I don’t think a Valentine’s Day or Wedding Anniversary has gone by without him sending me flowers, and this year again was no exception. I’m reading the lovely card he’s bought me as he tells me the tale of having to find another stand of cards in Sainsburys as there was a woman in front of him picking out card after card, armfuls of them! Why on earth would she need to be buying armfuls of Valentine’s cards I wonder? I got Justin a bottle of pink prosecco and his favourite Lindor chocolates – what can I say, I’m the cheapskate! Good job he does love me!

Valentine’s Day isn’t for everyone. Some are on their own, single by choice, single by circumstance, even bereaved. I know for a fact my Mum will get nothing from my Dad. If anyone asks him, he’ll say what he’s said for years “She’s my wife, not my Valentine”! What more is there to say? If mum had wanted romance she married the wrong man, but equally she doesn’t buy him anything either. There may be no romance in their relationship, but there is love; and given all they have endured together, that’s a strong bond of love. Today is about love and sharing that love with those you love, and if that is other members of your family, or your children, or your friends, so be it. The world is a better place for showing and sharing love with others.

Today hasn’t just been full of romance, but it has been full of love. I’ve had a dozen beautiful red roses, champagne, and our meal for this evening came by special delivery from Gigli’s. This weekend Justin is busy decorating Oliver’s bedroom. Oliver has moved into Edward’s bedroom, and this is the first time we’ve decorated it since it was Edward’s room. The green colour which Edward chose has been replaced with Moroccan Moods. Edward’s bed has gone, and Oliver has a new bed. Justin is building Oliver a new desk, and a new carpet will complete the makeover.

I say this because this is love. Love is giving your weekend to this project, for Oliver. Love is taking days off from work next week to be able to spend time on the decorating and DIY for Oliver’s room. Love is giving up Edward’s room for Oliver so he has a bigger room, and still loving that I can remember Edward’s room as Edward’s, and the new look room as Oliver’s.

Love is all the thoughts of Edward, and there have been so very many this weekend. I’ve cleared out toys and games and books from Oliver’s room, and have passed these on to others. Notably the Stacking Cups (which Edward practised with for the inter school competition … which he won), and the hundreds of Beano magazines which were Edward’s (he kept them as he read and reread them over again) I gave to a friend, whose children I know will love these all over again. She messaged to say the children were looking at YouTube clips to see how to do the stacking cups, and this gave me an excuse to look out the video I took of Edward practising, and I loved watching it over again several times this weekend.

Love is wanting to go and visit my child who is with us no more. I wanted to go and take some flowers to his grave, and knowing it would be in a state after the weather we’ve had recently I wanted to tidy it up there too. It has been so very cold though, Baltic in fact! I really couldn’t face the cold, and the wind, and the rain today, and we took the decision not to go. Edward would understand and be ok about it, in fact I know he’ll be laughing at how soft I’m being about not braving the weather! We’ve had a little chat from the comfort of my arm chair.

Love is spending time with my family, which I have been so grateful of this lockdown. Justin being at home has been wonderful; spending so much time with the boys has been lovely too … they may disagree!

Love is having the drive and commitment to work towards an Award, and Maksim Kosogorin has been supporting The Edward Dee Fund for some time now with raising awareness, stone painting, and raising funds. He’s taught himself to bake to learn a new skill, and has made, sold and delivered cakes and biscuits this weekend. He came round to the house with a packet of biscuits for me, wished me Happy Valentine’s Day, and handed over a box of money, containing £155 which he’d raised for the charity. It was lovely to hear about, and see pictures of his efforts, and so lovely that he took time to come today of all days to pass the money to me.

My mother in law popped round with some scones she’d made for us; she so often treats us to homemade goodies – that’s love.

Tonight, we’ll eat our steak supper (assuming the power comes back on and we can actually cook it, otherwise we’ll be having ham sandwiches). It’s been a long time since we’ve had power cuts, I remember this happening so often back in the 70s. We’ve lit candles around the house, they smell wonderful, particularly the Christmas Tree candle #forEdward, and the flickering of the candlelight seems to add to the ambiance of the evening.

Hopefully Justin will cook tea; I’m not great at cooking steak, I know I’ll cook it far longer than (a) is required (b) is desired. This evening we’ll sit together on the sofa, my cold feet warming up on Justin’s lap. We’ll continue binge watching Ozark, the current series we’re watching on Netflix, as we sip our Valentine’s Day champagne.

Love is being this comfortable with someone; wanting to be with that person all the time, that person who is your best friend and soulmate and wanting to grow old with that person. Love is being there for each other through good times and bad, we have had so many laughs and happy times, and we have endured pain and heartbreak like nothing else, and without Justin at my side I know I wouldn’t have made it through.

I love Justin so much, always have, always will. That’s love. All you need is love. Love is all you need.

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