Allow me to be your haven. I will bury myself under your pain and fill in the cracks with grace. The stories that you have stowed away can be cracked open and shared. They will never be judged.
Let my face be filled with wonder as you tell me about your eight year old physical pain that you endured like a sixty year old man. It causes me to smile and know that the boy that I fell in love with has a massive, quiet, enduring heart. Yet, if that pain returns, I will fill every crack of light, shutting the door behind me, camping out on the other side of the door, staying with you until you feel okay again.
Go for a run, by yourself, allow the gravel to shift under your feet and the wind to pound at your face. I will not beg you to stay. Rather the water will begin to boil, and I will get out a tea bag to put into your favorite mug for when you get back. I will not require much, perhaps a night or two watching the stars in each others arms. Give me a hand to hold when life feels unmoving and vibrant-less
Take off on a Saturday to capture the rusted buildings and sip coffee with the quirky small man for I cannot entertain you every moment of the weekend. But let’s reconvene on Sunday evening? We will build a fire on our front porch, facing the waves, sharing stories of the people we met and loved.
Although I want to keep you to myself, lets try and keep our home open to the broken, okay? I’ll listen as their tears fall, and you’ll conjure up some meal to fill their belly. We are the physical and the emotional healers, remember? We will be a team.
How about we steal one of those family heirlooms off of our families christmas trees? They will be the beginning of our own tree’s story…..the blast from the past to build a collection upon. We will take your puppet and train, and I will steal the hand-painted glass bulb. Can I create something in memorial of your grandma and grandpa that have passed from this life? Perhaps it will look like hands holding another’s and a pair of rose buds, or maybe it would be best to simply create a strand of train tracks to encircle the evergreen like paper chains. I promise you they shall never leave our memory and those who shall walk into our home will know of their love and their hearts
Share with me your quirky music, though your spoken poetry might have to be an only Tuesday night thing, when I feel sleepy, dreamy, and okay with being lulled to sleep by the sounds of a saxophone and soft voice. Curl your feet up again; it is okay to bury then under my shins, as we are sitting close on the love seat. Your cold feet do not scare me, besides I will most likely be hogging the quilt we are sharing that my grandma made. So, yes, it is only fair that my shins keep your toes warm
Also, why are you worried about your two left feet? Our choreography will be a lifelong project, learning to step together and not fall out of sync, no matter how clumsy we will appear. My dear, we will just keep trying till we get it. Our radio will play “One and Only” on repeat. Yes, my love, it is so cheesy, but it is us trying to be classy.
Speaking of classy, I will never be perfect.
The unfiltered words will flow more freely from my lips the longer the day and higher content of caffeine that hits my blood stream. Jeans and shirts are worn twice, and while you will have to iron your own plaid shirts, we can get a basket to keep the dirty ones in, and I do not mind washing them. I must confess the dryer will most likely begin twirling and spinning at midnight, and I may play my music at midnight, awkwardly shaking my hips as I wait for the quick clean cycle to finish. Yet, I know you. The music will entice you to crawl out of bed to catch the hilarious sight of my sleep deprived self thinking that I have the ability to dance.
In addition to our lifesaving coffee, we will have a shelf of tea and my hot chocolate. Our cupboards will have hooks underneath to hold our chipped and faded mugs that we cannot bear getting rid of.
Our media viewing habits will be odd, The Hunger Games and Marley and Me, My Fair Lady and Arsenic and Old Lace, Stranger Things and You’ve Got Mail. I will never make you watch a gory Grey’s Anatomy episode, but the intrigue of Scandal may hook you. And, yes, my love, I believe I will slowly begin to see the humor in your favorite old British shows.
We will have green walls and navy blue front door. Our home will be quirky, and we will keep three coasters on our front table for when your dad comes over, perhaps ones decorated with his photos. And while we are speaking of photos, I want to frame yours, the ones of water and of beautiful strangers. Our mantle will be filled with frames of snapshots of our “family,” the blood related and the ones forged by fire.
Let’s keep a guest room filled with bunk beds and trunks of snacks, for we shall go all out for those we love. Yet, do not fret, my dear, I shall be the one to get up with our guests and serve them breakfast while you energize for the day alone. However which way you wish to integrate yourself into the day shall not be judged. Take a hike, a twenty minute shower, read NPR stories, or listen to that Wild Club song, but know that if our mothers come into town, all bets are off. Together we will create an omelette bar and bake scones. They will be lemon blueberry or lemon raspberry, and yes, I know, save you a sip of the freshly squeezed lemon juice.
This prized sour juice will only be exchanged for a cup of coffee. Actually, instead, teach me how to make good coffee. Show me how your fingers lightly hold the metal cup of steamed milk, the simple twists of the wrist as you pour it into the mug. When the coffee is finished, let’s pull up the stools to our bar. I will smile and roll my eyes because you have begun to clean up, scrubbing dishes in our double sink.
“Let’s just exist. Let’s just be”
That is what we shall do when we do not know what to do. We will chose to be still, allowing the wind off of the bay to brush our hair into our faces, eyes glazed over, staring across the water, asking for answers. Perhaps we will never know them, but we still stand close, next to each other, exhaling as our hands find each other, remembering that we are not alone.
Our expressions of faith look differently, for I am more likely to find myself on the ground, tears staining the carpet below my knees. On the other hand, you find Him on the rocky shores, the wind to your face, breathing in peace. My love, we shall show each other Her face in these ways, our lives being richer for it.
Will we travel together? I suppose not always, in fact, I would love to believe that we shall never have to always be together. We can hop on a plane and be away for days and never have need to touch each other. Yes, we will always want to be close, but it is not a necessity, rather it is a privilege. It is a gift to sit near each other, physically being close to the person in your corner.
Let’s never forget how rare it is to find a best friend. May it always be our foundation. Friendship first, always first, because even when we are at odds and cannot love as pretending soulmates, we can be each others best friend, unwilling to give up. We won’t be passionate lovers unable to be apart and codependent, instead we will simply be in each other’s corner. Our intimacy will be drawn from the years of friendship, selfless love, and shared hearts, always, no matter where we are.
Even if you have to fly every other weekend to teach a class in Portland, even if I have to go help construct your sisters coffee shop for weeks at a time, my love, even if your business trips take you away on holiday weekend’s across the state line, we will use technology imperfectly and anticipate seeing each other’s face. My dear, we will never be apart, for we are rooting on each other across the miles between us.
My dear friend, my lover, darling, and partner in crime, we are meant to be, you and me, the quiet soul and the feisty heart.
(Authors Note: Some pieces of writing are written in one setting and are never shared. These piece was started over two plus years ago. It began as a sort of therapy, a space to dream. Over the years, it has morphed into a sort of love letter, a blessing and send off, and a secret wish, among other sentiments. There was a piece of me that has always wanted to publish this piece, but it has never felt like the right time. As I was sitting attempting to write today, I was brought back to these words. As soon as I began editing and reading it, I could not stop, and after much deliberation, I decided to publish this piece. I looked at it, edited it, and added to it, and in the process, I felt as if I reclaimed the ability to write beautiful words. In conclusion, if you have waded out this far, thank you for reading my words. All my love, Em. )