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See you someday, love.

See you when the waiting is over.

See you when I can wake up next to you, try to get out of bed, and decide that coffee can wait for just five more minutes of listening to your heartbeat.

See you when we can spend long evenings doing nothing more important than discussing muffins vs. cupcakes or the admirable qualities of cats.

See you when I can watch the subtle little changes that life causes in you from day to day, when I can take delight in all the tiny, inconsequential details that make you who you are. Like the kinds of smiles you have, or the way your voice gets rougher when you’re already half-asleep.

See you when I can cry on your shoulder and know the powerful comfort of your simple presence and strength.

See you when I can hug the frustration right out of you, or find the right words to say, or simply take care of you after you’ve had one of those days when everything goes wrong.

See you when I don’t just get to hear your laughter, but see it and feel it rumbling through your body into mine.

See you when time and space no longer separate us, when I can write my love on your skin instead of on a white, empty screen far removed from your warmth.

When today is difficult, or painful, or just plain sad, I always try to remember one thing.

I’ll see you someday.

Until someday, love.

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To my future husband, about a secret longing

By the time you read this knowing it’s for you, you already have my heart, along with the promise that it is yours to keep for the rest of our lives. Now there’s something I need to tell you, a seldom-spoken truth about the heart I gave that hopefully won’t change your mind.

I need you to pursue me.

There. Writing it, I sort of cringe in front of my computer. I try to find words that are less needy, less emotional, less vulnerable. It sounds so…unfeminist. But as much as I believe in a woman’s worth apart from a man’s opinion, there it is, the bare, unvarnished truth of my heart: I need you not just to love me, but to long for me.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not merely being longed for that I crave. There have been other pursuits in the past, other promises that I haven’t accepted because I was waiting for you to show up. But when you came…I stopped running. It’s  kind of ironic that the man I cannot turn away from is the one whose pursuit I most desire.

May I tell you something else? Sometimes, I don’t really believe I deserve it. On the darkest days, I wonder if you can ever look at me and see someone you would seek to the ends of the earth, someone worth fighting for, someone captivating and absolutely irreplaceable. And I’m very much afraid that if the answer is no,  or a devastatingly careless shrug, my love for you and my self-doubt would conspire to make me accept it. I would make excuses on your behalf, clinging to the assurance you gave while you were still trying to win me, convincing myself that it’s enough. I would dismiss my need as overly romantic and unreasonable, all the while quietly wondering if you’re only staying because I ask so little of you. And day by day, my heart would gradually shrink, drying up and shriveling on the part that your yearning used to fill.

So please. When we are spending our lives together, never stop wanting me.

Miss me when I’m gone. Really miss me.

Listen when I talk, even if it doesn’t seem important to you, even when it’s hard to understand. That’s how I’ll know you’re still discovering me, that you’re still interested, and not indifferent.

Don’t let me be the only one who asks for quality time. Your time, those moments when we can just delight in each other, is the “I love you” I most understand.

Kiss me like you mean it. Let’s promise never to let ourselves get out of practice.

I want our bed to eventually sag in the middle, because that’s where we always end up, instinctively drawing close even in our sleep. There’s nothing sadder in a marriage, I think, than a bed where the occupants never cross the boundary between his side and hers.

Whatever you do, just tell me. Tell me in a way that feels more than just a habit. Tell me with your voice and your eyes and your hands.  Tell me with the way you seek my gaze across a crowd. Tell me with the way you touch me when we wake up. Tell me you want me, desire me, that you would choose me again if we both lived twice.

Because there’s one last thing I want to confess, my darling: that’s exactly how I feel about you. You see, I’ve been longing for you all my life. Even before we met, even when my faith wavered that you would come, I’ve been longing for you. And the truth is, love, I simply don’t know how to stop.

*****

Just like last weekInspiration Monday has again given me exactly the push I needed to get out what I wanted to write. This week, the prompts I heeded were “you only live twice” and “single but taken”.  Thanks, InMon!

I feel like there should be fireworks, really.

My favorite thing
about the way
you look at me, babe
is that now and then
I catch it
that little hint of wonder
and a bit of disbelief, too
that you found me
that I’m real
we’re real
and I’m yours.

I want to run to the mirror
and check
if there’s something there
something changed
something special
that makes you look at me
just like that
like I’m precious.
and utterly unique.
and you’ll never
never ever
let me go.
What is it, babe?
There must be something.

But nothing’s different.
Still the same old
chin and cheeks and nose
familiar and ordinary.
But wait—
Wait
My smile is new.
It’s changed
like I’ve won the lottery
without buying a ticket
(imagine that!)
and in my eyes,
that same disbelief
that same giddy wonder
that you found me.
You finally found me.
My darling
my sweetest love
I could spend my whole life
just looking at you.

*****

I wrote this for Carry On Tuesday, in response to the These are a few of my favourite things prompt taken from one of my most favorite movies, The Sound  of Music. The challenge is open all week. Join us!

This is how I plan to love you for the rest of my life

Just so you know, this is what happens when you have my heart.

You would never doubt it.

I wouldn’t let you.

Be more mysterious, I’ve been told, by magazines and blogs and sleepover confidants. It’s a mistake to let him know everything that you feel. Men like the chase, like competition, to keep from getting bored. So make him jealous, they wink and nudge. Play hard to get.

But how hard to get can I be, babe, when I’m already yours?

How jealous can I make you when the very thought of you doubting your place in my life feels unbearably wrong?

There will be no games between us. No manipulations, no pretenses, no lies.

You will know that you hold my heart. You will know that I would never want anyone else.

You will know that I love you.

See, I plan on telling you every day.

First thing when I wake up, whispered against your skin.

Last thing at night, for you to take into your dreams.

When you are tired and frustrated and sad.

When you are so lighthearted you start singing songs whether you know the lyrics or not.

When you make me laugh.

When you save me from cockroaches and nightmares and panic attacks.

When I am proud of you.

When you can’t believe that I am proud of you (especially then).

When we need to fix something wrong, so you’ll know that whatever it is, it won’t change how I feel.

When I’m asking for coffee kisses.

When you’re asking for a back rub.

When I welcome you home or kiss you goodbye.

When you look like you need a hug, or even when you don’t but I just want to give you one anyway.

I will keep telling you, babe, in whispers, in exclamations, in laughter, in letters, in touches, in looks.  I will tell you until it sinks into your skin, flows with your blood, and joins in the beating of your heart. Until my love for you becomes part of who you are, and who you will be, for as long as your heart beats, and mine.

I will tell you, always.

And every time I do, I will mean it more than the last time I said it. Every “I love you” will carry the weight of all the “I love you’s” before, and the promise of more to come.

That promise will always be fulfilled.

I will always love you.

And I will always let you know.

A tribute to real men

Here’s to men who are worthy of the name. Men who move, who take responsibility, who refuse to be passive. Men who’d rather do it right than take the easy way out or play it safe.

Here’s to men who can fight courageously and give in gracefully, who can stand up for their rights and the rights of those who are weaker, and just as willingly say “I was wrong.”

Here’s to men who can live in the moment, yet also forego temporary gratification for the sake of something more important. Men who know what’s important.

Here’s to men who are strong, passionate, brave, and honorable, men whose hearts are alive.

There are boys, guys, dudes, and blokes, and then there are those who are MEN.

If you are one of them, you are rare.

You stand head and shoulders above the rest and you give me hope.

Here’s to you.

 

I’m daydreaming again. There’s just something about this place that makes dreaming so easy.

I can see it now, babe, our life together.

Like the first morning I wake up with you. There will be that odd feeling at first, you know: disorientation. Something’s different, I think to myself behind closed eyes, still sleepy but puzzled. Then it dawns on me.

“Oh my God,” I gasp out loud. “I’m married.”

Wide awake now, I turn my head to find you beside me, smiling. You’re trying not to laugh, I can tell.

“Good morning,” you whisper, in that voice that I’ve had the biggest crush on from the start.

“I’m your wife,” I inform you, like this is news somehow.

You give up on holding the chuckles back.

“Yes,” you laugh, pulling me close. “And I’m your husband.”

That vital piece of information gets lost in the pleasure of snuggling deeper into your arms. My favorite place in the world, sweetly familiar on this life-changing day.

“It feels strange,” I admit to your chest, the only part of you that I can see. You’re holding me so tightly I couldn’t look up, but I don’t want any space between us. Not even the tiniest bit.

“Being married?”

“Yeah,” I sigh, but the feeling is wearing off as I focus on the beat of your heart. Another familiar thing.

“Bad strange?” you ask, ready to reassure me. You’ve always done that, calmed me down when I over think myself into a panic. You’ve talked down my walls until the only thing keeping me safe is the certainty that you will never, never, never take your love away.

I consider all of that, as well as your question, and I realize that there’s nothing to over think. This is you. This is us. We get to keep each other forever. And on the heels of that thought comes a great big booming burst of joy inside my chest. Fireworks, babe. Cheers and confetti and a big brass band. The biggest smile of my life growing inside my heart. I’m married. To you.

“No,” I say, wanting to jump up and bounce on the bed, except I don’t really want to leave your arms. “Wonderful strange. The bestest and happiest kind.” Can you feel my smile against your skin?

And then you turn my face up, and you see it for yourself, all the happiness in my eyes. It has to show — I don’t think my body can keep that much joy a secret. I don’t  mind. I want you to know all the deepest things written in my soul. I love you. I choose you. I choose you over fear, over self-protection, over doubt. I choose you for the rest of my life, for always. Completely. Irrevocably. No one else.

When you kiss me, I can feel those same words in every touch of your lips. All the words you’ve said over and over, even long before I was brave enough to say them back. I love you. I love you, I love you, I love you. Never stop believing that I do.

As I start to lose myself, I realize one thing. Every morning, from this day forward, will begin like this. And suddenly, that doesn’t feel strange anymore. It feels right. It’s the rightest thing in the world, waking up beside you. It’s the only way I want to wake up for the rest of my life.

Until someday, my love.

Wait for me as I wait for you.

The other side of someday

I want to watch the rain with you. I want to cuddle on the couch with a blanket, a cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows, and you. We’ll open the window a little bit so that the smell of rain can come in, but I won’t be cold. With your arms around me, I’ll be in the safest place I’ve ever been, surrounded by your strength. It’s the only home I’ll ever need.

I want to go camping on the beach, on an island that we can have to ourselves. We’ll put up a tent and wake up early enough to catch the sunrise, and run on sand untouched by any other feet. At night, we’ll light a fire and watch the stars and the fireflies, but it’ll be the hardest thing in the world to think of wishes. What more can I ask for? You’re more than I ever dreamed I could have.

I want to walk with you, too, to everywhere and nowhere in particular. City sidewalks, lamp-lit boulevards, and long-forgotten trails — we’ll explore them together. We’ll duck into old secondhand book stores, try new cafes, or have a picnic under the trees. But the best part of these adventures won’t be how far we went, but the steps we took closer to each other. I’ll never get tired of discovering the man who won my heart.

But mostly, I just want to be with you. To hear you promise your love and trust that you mean it. To confess how I need you and know that vulnerability is okay. To look at you and see you looking at me and know that you’re thinking: “Wow. We really get to spend our lives together.” I’ll be thinking it, too. Because after all the false starts, babe, after all the wrong turns that broke my heart… I still believe you’ll come. I still believe you’ll find me.