Thank You, Katie

Dear Katie,

You are one of only two non-family humans who have seen and helped me through each of the last 10 years.

10 years ago was when I met you. I was racist and homophobic. I was struggling through religion and what I believed in. I had hair down to my shoulders. I wore sweatpants and baseball caps everywhere. Half of what came out of my mouth was either about sports or Dave Matthews Band.

Today, none of those things come remotely close to describing me (excetpt maybe the DMB thing from time to time). I’m a hippie-wannabe and a hipster doofus.

The struggle over the last decade has been real. It’s taken effort, frustration, and uncomfortable conversations to get to where I am today. And you stuck with me through it all.

You saw through a bigoted, hairy exterior to the potential that was underneath. And you extracted that potential from me. Loving is so much more enjoyable than hating, and I have you to thank for helping me put love above hate (a few others, too, but this letter is only for you!).

I, for one, can’t understand how or why you’d stick with me through all that change, but you did. You made it so much easier than it should have been.

When it came time to get married, I was told a lot of people are nervous and get cold feet. I had no issues. Not only did I love that we were going to be the center of attention, but I wasn’t nervous. Not about you. Not about the future. Not about change. Because we’d already changed so much together. I knew we could take on anything.

Sometimes the dark recesses of my mind take me to a hypothetical location where you don’t exist. Sometimes the scene is set in the past, other times it’s in the future. It’s not meant to be morbid, but to realize and reflect upon all the holes you fill in my life. I often come out of those hypothetical scenarios with a pixelated image, because I have no idea what life would be like (or would have been like) without you. I just know it’d be more difficult. You make my life pretty easy.

We’ve done so many things together.

Great things. Roadtrips. Cruises (OK, cruises totally suck, but we still had fun!). Camping and backpacking weekends. A trip to Europe. A week driving a manual van in Iceland. Hockey, football, baseball, basketball, tennis, and soccer games/matches.

Not so great things. Arguments. Difficult conversations about current and future us. Months apart for work or school.

The thing is I probably would have done most of those things anyways. But I’d rather have done them all with you. All of them. Even the bad ones. Because you make everything easier for me.

And I think about the things I have now because of you.

I’m eating healthy because you spend 1–2 hours every night making dinner with real food. The house is clean because you care about it being clean. My parents have fresh sheets when they visit because you make sure they do. And I enjoy playing music in bars because you come and watch, even when I know you’d rather be enjoying a quiet night alone at home.

I’ve said it before and I’ll keep saying it. You make my life pretty easy.

Thank you, Katie.

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