Feb. 6 Scribbling

I was supposed to share this yesterday, when it was a crisp Feb. 6 and the trees--at least those I saw on my way to work--were encapsulated in frozen fog and ice. Nature's popsicles, have you.

I had been planning to share personal scribblings, the words of my semi-significant other, actually, who was not aware of my plan. He knew only that I wanted photos of his notes for a "project." "Can you do me a huge favor?" I asked, reminiscent of "Shit Girls Say." "Can you take photos of the scrapbook I gave you for Christmas and send them to me?" "Sure," he texted back.

Later that night, I looked at each of the nine photos he had forwarded. They were blurry, orange. Out of focus and less meaningful. I recognized the Post-Its, knew how certain ones were crammed with miniscule writing and others were not. I knew the postcards, the ones from North Carolina that joked about white-water paddling. Examining the photos was painful, but part of me wished that I still had them in my own possession. They were reassuring, loving, hopeful, personal. They included my Iowa-inspired nickname, as well as the promises of the future.

I still cry when I read some of them. My eyes well, my heart swells, and I wish, I so deeply wish, that we were not so far apart. The distance, however, and the time we spend not seeing each other, is made a bit easier by the existence of those words.

So, in honor of Feb. 6, I share with you just one note, the first note. The first scribbling that started it all.


To my "Hans:"

For three years, I have readied myself for bed, snuggled into my pajamas and sheets and thought of you. Some of those nights have been spent with you, curled into you and your arms. Arms that never fail to give me a hug. Arms that never fail to brush a stray hair from my face, a tear from my cheek. Sleep is sweeter, easier, when I am with you. There is no reason to be scared of the night or frightened of the things in my imagination when I know that I can wake next to you, a man with a golden heart and a protective loyalty.

I know that you will do your best to take care of me, and I cannot thank God enough for giving me someone who began fulfilling that promise from the very beginning. Like this photo, our relationship can be hazy. Sometimes, we don't understand our bases, our commitments. We confuse each other and argue, debate and question morals. We're opposites, yes, but the core of our relationship is just as plain as the words you first wrote to me.

You and I both know that I am not the best girlfriend, that I'm not even the best friend. I have a hard time convincing myself that such a thing exists in general. However, I do believe that a particular person can be their best with another individual. That said, you accepted me as I was, helped me change for the better and loved me regardless. You have my eternal gratitude for loving me--a person dimpled with imperfection.

It is true--I love you. These are my words, and I have no fears in proclaiming that here, to myself, to family, to friends, to you. I loved you before I even realized what it was, before I even knew that I was ready. Like so many other pledges, you kept your word--you were first, and above all, my friend. Three years ago, when I met you, you were my friend. You listened, you hugged, you let me cry on your shoulder. Today, after road trips and dinner dates, canoe trips and tire blow-outs, weddings and bowling games and photo adventures and sunsets and horse carriage rides, you are still my friend. My confidant. My trusted. My heart.

Here's to knowing you, Sweetheart, and to thinking of you--then and now, for three years, since the first day I met you.

Love,

Your Little Cornstalk

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