Let's talk about love. Big, bulging, puffed up, gigantic, heavy-weight love.
I can announce that I love my husband of nearly 17 years deeply and profoundly. Yes, he annoys the hell out of me, with his ability to find a reason to gravel the driveway just before 15 people turn up for lunch, and his adeptness at burning the toast EVERY time he makes it. But he is my one and only and I love him with all my heart.
And the love I feel for my son? Well that's a completely different kettle of fish. I love him in a way no-one else ever can because I was the one who grew him with my body and gave birth to him. I am, and always will be, his mummy. We laugh till we cry about things only him and I understand. The connection between us has a depth that is unfathomable.
So what about my dogs?
These three little people occupy a place in my heart that is vast and wide and completely different to the love I feel for my nearest and dearest humans.
I cherish them and the life I have with them.
When I come down in the morning to be greeted by their eager little faces it always makes my day. How could you not fall deeply in love with such brilliant characters who dote on your every word and treat you like the most important person on the planet at all times!
They are funny, loyal and loving. They never seem to get out of bed on the wrong side, they don't need a cup of tea before they can talk to you, and you don't have to ask them 15 times to brush their teeth and get their shoes on. They are perky and willing and up for anything...in a heartbeat!
I often think that people who maybe don't have a 'special someone' in their lives should (if the situation allows) go out immediately and get a dog. I mean, if you've been unsuccessful in the girlfriend/boyfriend arena, this is your chance to find a companion who doesn't care what you look like, will kiss you even if you have medical-grade halitosis, will stare at you with eyes overflowing with love whilst you're on the toilet and will do anything you ask of them, without any kind of favour expected in return.
They give you a purpose in life. A reason to think of someone else before yourself. Someone to come home to; to kiss goodnight. Someone to be responsible for; to care for; to nurture and nourish. And obviously someone to love.
Dogs are brilliantly simple creatures. Feed and water them, give them regular exercise, provide somewhere warm and cosy to sleep, and garnish them with love. It's crazy how they reciprocate, but 1000-fold. And always unconditionally.
So with everything that's going on in the world right now, I'm sending out a big beacon of love this Valentine's Day. Hug one another (whether they are human or canine...preferably someone you are familiar with...) and let them know how much they mean to you.
I hope you all have a lovely day. xxx