Many people scoff at romance novels (and romance novelists) and say they create unrealistic views of love and men.
But you know what?
I don’t think we do.
Sure, romance writers idealize/ romanticize many settings, scenes and lines of dialogue – what novelist doesn’t? – but I don’t think I’m coming out of left field with the fact that there are many, many good men out there who love unconditionally and truly, and who know how to love well.
Case in point – my husband.
I’ve always called him “Superman” on this blog, since I started it in 2009, (and here’s why), but he’s raised the bar considerably in recent months as he’s come to my rescue during cancer.
Here’s what a real-life hero looks like:
- Within about 2 days of our hearing my cancer diagnosis at the Breast Cancer Center, a package came from Amazon with a little bell in it. It was from my husband. He said it was for me to ring anytime I needed anything. It was a beautiful, symbolic gift. So, so sweet. I stare at the bell (which is on my nightstand now) and feel appreciative at the gesture more than I ever actually ring it.
- He has done ALL the cooking and ALL the grocery shopping and ALL the kitchen chores/cleaning for a long time now (since I’ve been on writing deadlines, which has been about 2 years), but he’s really stepped it up with the cancer diagnosis. This is especially important because we still have a teenager at home who still needs that consistency – that life is still on a regular, expected schedule.
- He basically goes to the store any time I need something. Like RIGHT THEN. He picks up all my prescriptions, shops for all toiletries, basically rushes across the street to the store any time I vaguely hint that I might want or like or need an item. In about 15 minutes, it’s right in front of me.
- He got me a housecleaning service! Twice a month. A godsend!
- On my “down” days during chemo (two days after chemo day, usually Saturday and Sunday), I never feel very social or chatty, so he would always leave me alone exactly when I need it. I would camp out in our bedroom and he would give me full control of the remote/TV all day, or leave me alone with my stack of books.
- He would make me a healthy protein breakfast every morning (when I could handle it) — eggs/spinach usually. He would bring it upstairs to me and I would eat it while I was getting ready for work. Now I’m mostly drinking “Ensure” shakes because they’re more tolerable, but I appreciated the egg effort so much.
- He came to any appointment I asked him to.
- He buys me little things for comfort whenever I express that I want something. Examples: my port incision hurt really bad when I’d use my seatbelt, so he RUSHED out and got me one of those furry things to cover the belt strap; my mouth hurt one weekend and I said other patients seem to use Biotene, so he RUSHED out to find it and brought me home two different products; I had a really bad headache at first after chemo and he RUSHED out to get me one of those frozen masks you put on your face; I felt sad that my Kindle cord wasn’t long enough to read in bed all day so he immediately ordered on Amazon FOUR different 30-foot-long cords!
That’s a true hero.
They’re truly out there.