A few minutes after midnight on the first day of the month, J emailed.
I had forgotten, but he remembered. Two years ago, some time in February, we happened.
(What followed was the sweetest love letter I’ve ever received, not just for what it says, but for the way it reflects what I value about our relationship.)
It’s not important to me to remember when we first kissed or when we last kissed. What is important to me is when we’ll be able to kiss again. What’s important to me is that we maintain whatever-this-is long enough to make it to that next kiss. What’s important to me is how it feels when it happens. Those things are what I’ll celebrate.
Two years of kisses, quarrels, laughter and liquor, obsession, affection, and anger. Two years of more love, more frustration, more connection and confusion than I know what to do with.
It’s intense and intimate, and I’ve loved every moment, even the moments I’ve hated. I’ve even learned to appreciate the times we’re apart and the moments we’re disconnected for what they make us when we’re together.
What I haven’t ever admitted here is that J has always been leaving.
J’s been stalking job opportunities on the west coast since before we met. The reality is at some point, he’ll get the call, and then he’ll leave. I won’t move with him and he won’t stay. I don’t know if he would stay — it’s not something we’ve discussed, nor will we. It’s not important because it’s not an option. I’d never agree to it. I’d sooner break it off than ask him to abandon his dreams for me, and I won’t abandon my dreams for him. Our dreams are part of what makes us who we are — if either one of us changed, we wouldn’t be “us” anymore. That’s not what I want. I want what we have now for as long as we can have it.
We’ve always known we’re on borrowed time, and perhaps, that makes it all the more valuable.
In some sense, I think it’s why I’ve allowed myself to love him as hard as I have without worrying too much about what tomorrow will bring. I can be more vulnerable and open with someone who will disappear, in large part because I’ve always known that someday, he’ll be gone.
I’ve tried to take as much happiness as I can in the time that we have, all the while, struggling to keep a distance comfortable enough to ease the pain I know is coming… someday.
Not today. :)
J, thank you for two fantastic years. More importantly, thank you for today.
If we have two more years, two more months, two days, two hours, or two minutes, I’ll love you as hard as I can for the time that we have.