To my valentine


Dear Job,

At this time of year we are encouraged to take a look at our relationship and think about what it really means to us, hopefully with the aim of reaffirming things and realising just how well we have it.  It’s time to think of all the little things we appreciate, and share this appreciation with others.  It may be a little embarrassing to open up about all this, but I want you to know how I feel and be honest from the start.

When I met you I was just coming out of a long term relationship which hadn’t worked out.  In it we had been surviving and getting through things, but going through the motions and not really caring for one another as we deserved.  I took the tough but right decision to leave, and it was at that time that you came into my life.

At first, I think we’d both admit that things were tentative at best.  We spent the first few weeks and months feeling our way around each other, gently nudging at some boundaries and working out each others expectations.  There were a few ups and a couple of downs, and I have to be honest with you when I say that to begin with I wasn’t sure if we were as right for each other as we hoped.

It didn’t help when I saw my old flame briefly one day; it all felt so comfortable and cosy that I wondered if I’d made a mistake leaving.  I knew I could never really go back, but acknowledged that there were things that I was missing that – at first – you weren’t providing.

However, since then I’ve come to realise that you also weren’t providing the things which made me leave and move on; the underappreciation, the tantrums and the dark days.  And those things which I loved about what used to be my relationship are slowly developing between us.  Tentatively at first but gathering pace recently, I’m starting to feel like I understand you more, and that you understand me.  The hours I am investing in making things work seem less like hours at work and more like time achieving what I want to achieve, and what (I hope) you want us to achieve together as well.

We both had a lot of baggage to work through, and have shed elements of our existence which in the past we saw as vital to life.  You’ve said goodbye to many who you once knew, and I’ve had to fit my life around you more than I ever have before.  Sacrifices have been made on both sides which could have been the breaking of us.

I’m not going to be naive.  We both know that the future is not going to be all plain sailing, and that there will be some turbulent times ahead.  The fact that we live in the real world means we will have to understand how things are going and work together to make the most of them.  But I am starting to feel that if we both pull together and keep caring for each other, that we will get to a brighter, happier place.

So, this valentine’s day I want to reaffirm my deep affection for you.  You are one of the most important yet unappreciated things I know, the target of abuse for the unknowing and uncaring masses who stoicly takes it and delivers as best you can regardless.  Most people only truly appreciate things when they are gone, and I can’t begin to imagine how appreciated you would be if one day we all woke up to find you gone.

I promise that, for as long as it is reciprocated, I will strive to make our relationship work, and will plough all my love, care and devotion to creating a union which achieves more together than we ever could apart.  I will put the hours in, along with the blood, sweat and tears if required, and know that you will be there to pick me up when times are bad and raise me up when they are good.  It may be early days but I have a strong feeling that, if we can just get through these rough times ahead, we will come through to a brighter, better place feeling stronger, leaner and better than ever before.

So happy valentines day; I want to shout from the rooftops that truly, I love local government.

Welovelocalgovernment is a blog written by UK local government officers. If you have a piece you’d like to submit or any comments you’d like to make please drop us a line at: welovelocalgovernment@gmail.com

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