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  • When I think about love, oftentimes I think about my parents. They're not what you call "romantic" by any means. My father's proposal was little more than a "Hey, wanna get married?" (Which is so very him.) They don't do anything on Valentine's Day or on their anniversary. There are no big gifts--no chocolate, no diamonds--but I've realized through the years that that doesn't matter. It's not the big things that define a love, it's the small, everyday, normal things. Like the paperwhites.

    They are my mom's favorite flower. In the summer my father buys flowers every Saturday morning from the local farmer's market: a bunch of brightly colored gladiolas, and a few paperwhites. But now it is March. There is no farmer's market; there are no gladiolas. But my father bought several bulbs of paperwhites and spent the week growing them in the kitchen. Now their delicate stalks have risen and the flowers have bloomed and the kitchen is ever so lightly perfumed. They are beautiful; the moment is beautiful. They do not need big things to say "I love you": the flowers are enough.
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