To my future girlfriend,

Let’s get something clear right now.

YOU.

You will not take away my boys (guy friends), my fitness, my motorcycle, my alone time, everything that brought me joy before I met you. You will not try to change my silliness, inappropriateness or whatever makes me me that I like about myself but may bring resistance in you. You will not expect me to be a certain way because you’ve read my blogs. You will not hold my words against me. You will accept me for who I am, with all my defect and short comings. You will understand that I am in process and on my own journey as you are on yours. And although we are together, we will both have our own personal paths as well. You will be responsible for your own happiness. I will not be your “guy with potential” or project. I will be someone you choose to love and do life with. Each day. You will not keep me in the dark or in a box. You will tell me how you feel, even if it’s drift. And you will not pick which friends you will and will not introduce me to. If I’m in your life, I’m in your life. You will not present me better or different because of your own insecurities. You will leave room for me to be me as you continue to be you. You will be my best friend but not my only friend. You will shatter your image of what a couple should look like, how they should act, and what kind of friends they should have, as I will do the same. You don’t have to agree or like what I’m passionate about but you must support me in it because it matters to me. You will have to deal with my bedhead, my night mouth guard, and horrible sleeping patterns. And finally, you will scratch my back.

ME.

In exchange, I will take all my learnings in my previous relationships and use them to be the best version of myself that I can. I will always be honest, never assassinate your character, and take full responsibility for anything I do that’s wrong or hurtful. I will listen, communicate, open doors — literally and create a safe space, knowing that trust is earned. Not given. I will love you as you are, support you where ever you’re at in your journey and hold your hand through all your seasons. I will stand by your side, not in front or behind you. I will water my own lawn and work on my own shit. I will be responsible for my own happiness and keep the toilet seat down so you don’t fall in in the middle of the night because I know the only worse feeling than sitting on that cold rim is stubbing your toe. I will write you little notes, make you stuff and buy you flowers for no reason. We will share books, ideas, and sweat — both in the gym and the bedroom. I will not try to control you or compete with you. I will not try to “fix” you. I will do life with you, not at you. I will read your subtext, energy, and body language, not just your words. I will do my best to get the hint. I will consider your story. I will make you breakfast. Not everyday. But many. I will always read your heart and intentions before reacting to your words. I will return texts and messages promptly or as fast as I can. I will protect your name and character and be thinking of you in every decision I make.

US.

We will both understand that there will be days we can’t stand each other. There will be days you will want to punch me in the face and I will want to take the long way home. We will disagree on things, like movies and books, and diets. I will forget things. Misplace things. You will run late. Our friends will have opinions of us. You will have questions. We will fight. Maybe a lot. You will shut down. I will wonder. But at the end of the day, we will both come back, to each other. And your head will always fall back on my chest. And no matter how many times we fight, we will always fight fair. That will be a non-negotiable. And we will be together knowing that we are choosing to be together. Not because of logic, age, or loneliness. Not because we look good on paper or we’ll make cute babies. Not because we’ve already committed to this. Not because we don’t want to be alone. But because we believe in us and make a choice every, single, day, to be in this and love each other the best way we know how. Our relationship will not be built on fear, as many are. But like many relationships, ours will also be hard. We are both aware of this. We’ve been through a shit ton. And we are both different people today. So we won’t let what was affect what is. We will not compare us to anyone else, including our exes. Any residue we have from our past relationships we will work on individually. It is our own responsibility and what being in something healthy looks like. We will sharpen each other and I will make you feel beautiful and you will make me feel invincible and vice versa. The only thing we can promise is to be honest and love as hard as we can. We both know there is risk. We both know we can get hurt. But we are willing to put that on the line to experience the high notes of something meaningful.

We will search for magic and settle for nothing less.

Love,
Johnkim