Sabina Higgins ... He is my love, he is my inspiration
Ireland's First Lady, Sabina Higgins, has spoken about her love for her husband, saying listening to President Michael D Higgins speak is like poetry to her ears.
In an interview with the Sunday Independent at the inaugural Tiffany Ireland Funds lunch for women in business and philanthropy, Mrs Higgins explained why she first fell for her husband of over 40 years and she described how they spend their golden years together as Ireland's First Couple.
When asked about the secret to a happy marriage, she said: "I think an understanding of life. You occupy a big world. And you are not dependent on the other. We are so very committed to each other, but we are also very committed to humanity and to the world.
"We have a lot in common. We both love literature. We like drama and music. And we are very committed to the world, so really there wouldn't be any time to go looking beyond," she laughed.
Asked if President Higgins, known for his love of poetry, still recites to her, she replied: "You see, I love him speaking. I have always loved it, I think he is wonderful. So I am at functions with him all the time and he gives terrific, wonderful lectures and talks on aspirations for humanity.
"He will be in New York now, and in the city of New York he is going to be giving a lecture and it will really be about our aspirations for humanity. . . and the importance for a woman's place to be recognised, and he speaks so well, and these things are so important… it's like poetry in a way."
President Higgins once described Sabina as his "rock", and, in turn, Mrs Higgins now says he is her inspiration.
"He is my inspiration. He is doing so much good that I am so happy to be able to support it that I feel I am a part of it," she says.
"Whenever I am at any event, I feel like I am giving out that love and that care and that support for what he is saying. So, really, I feel like I am part of it in that way. It's like being in a drama. I mean, all our life in a way is a drama and I am a supporting actor."
When it is remarked that she seems visibly in love with the President, she smiled: "I wouldn't be able to say those things, but I am delighted someone is saying them."
She also talked of the romance the couple still share. Speaking about Valentine's Day and anniversaries, she said: "We have lovely occasions like that and he gave me a great big, beautiful bunch of flowers for my birthday."