I Love You

Just So You Know…

Image by melkhagelslag from Pixabay
Come with me, My love
To the sea, The sea of love
I wanna tell you
How much, I love you
Do you remember, When we met
That’s the day, I knew you were my pet
I wanna tell you
How much, I love you
Come with me, My love
To the sea, The sea of love
I wanna tell you
How much, I love you
-Cat Power, Sea of Love

Cat Power, Sea of Love

Sometimes I think it’s important to use words to clarify other ones. I enjoy reading definitions, to see the way Merriam-Webster or Oxford interpreted something, as opposed to the perception I have of an idea, all summoned up from the sight or sound of a word. I ask myself, “did I understand it correctly?” Or “did I learn something along the way?”

Words. Language. It’s an interesting part of life to me.

Saying “I Love You” to a person is not taken lightly by me personally, because of all the combinations of all the words in those big fat thick fuckin’ books we call dictionaries, it is that singular combination of some very simple words that I hold most sacred. Just three little words.

I and Love and You.

But it’s not the words that matter, but the definition itself. It was never the words themselves that mattered. It was the meaning behind them.

So this is what I mean, my Orange Sky, when I say it, just so you know…

I see you as a little girl not getting the love you deserved, and I want to hold you and squeeze you and make you feel as safe and valued as my daughters do when I hold them. My heart breaks for you, and although I never knew you way back then, if I had, I would have protected you. Even if I were just doing it as a kid. I still would have made you feel your worth.

When I say “I love you”, I see you like her. That little kid version of you, and I love her too because she is you.

I see you as a teenager with your lame ass, dorky first boyfriend who I would gladly accidentally elbowed and then stole his girlfriend. I would have laughed at the idea that he would have stood a chance once I had my sights set on you. That you’d learn the hard way of your inability to resist me, and that the ‘bad boy’ and ‘nice guy’ inside of me don’t have to be mutually exclusive. I see her — this version of you — and I appreciate that it made you who you are today.

I see her and wonder if heaven will allow me to know her, because heaven is supposed to be good, and that I really would love to know her. And she is a part of what made you who you are, and so I love her too.

I see you in grad school kicking ass, shelving any doubt of weakness as you dig in and make at all look so fucking easy. I feel bad for her because she deserved someone to appreciate how amazing she is, in the way I do as I write this. For someone to make her coffee on the long nights, to review her papers and hard work to help her, not because it was right to do, but because I believed in you.

I see this as the alpha woman in development and get weak in the knees for her because I know what that struggle feels like to care about your work, and I see a counterpart of her in my own ambition. I see her, building the woman I fell for now, and I value her and I love her too.

And I see you as you are today.

I see your submissive soul dying to breathe freely, and your vulnerability aching to release, fading into me at the times we allowed this to happen. I see your stresses and your worries, and I want to put you on my lap and make it all better. I see your struggle and I see that since you were that little girl, that it wasn’t until me that anybody ever really saw you as I see you. And it pisses me off, because it’s so clear to me, and everyone should have seen this the whole time. I see this woman of strength and weakness, and I love every single side of her with every fiber of who I am.

I see the needs you have inside of you, to try and convince yourself of things that are not real because reality hurts too much to recognize. And the poor decisions you make to try and force it, and I empathize with you because it must suck to try and stifle your heart, and I want to hold you and just let you fucking cry it all out.

Because I know your heart is gold, or I never would have given you mine to begin with. I see it is pure and I see it has been ignored and trampled on for so long, and that any pain I suffer now is a byproduct of a woman doing her best to try to maintain and function in life.

I see what this weakness in you makes you capable of now, unfortunately, and it hurts so fucking deeply, but I try to find the silver lining and become a better man for it. To dismiss the ideas that “she doesn’t deserve this,” and remember that she definitely does. To reach past what I was once was before, and just remember the little girl, or the grad school alpha, or the “you”, that I met and kissed that summer day, and just love you as I know you now.

And I still love you just as deeply as ever – all the same.

And I see her, and I know she has to figure things out. She has to figure out if being seen like this is important enough, or maybe it is just something that is less valuable to some people, as it is to me. I am, after all, the one who is writing this, so maybe I am just different than other people, and I find this as essential in life as food and water.

But then I see you in five years, and then ten, and then twenty, yet this time I see two different versions of you in each. I love them both, and I always will, but only one of them do I actually say it to. She is happy and smiling in a well-lit room; the other is maintaining, and I cannot place where she physically is. One is Francesca, while the other is who Francesca should have been, had she had the courage to live within what she knew existed, once she felt it. And then I remember Francesca was never real in the first place. I feel sad for one these versions of you; I feel so relieved for the other one.

But nevertheless, I love them both. I always will.

So when I say, “I Love You”, I don’t mean it in a way I haven’t thought about. Clearly, I have considered this very, very much. I don’t wonder if I mean it or if I ever will believe I didn’t mean it. I don’t mean it in a way like “I really really like you”. I mean it in a way where I see all parts of you, the good and the bad, completely exposed for who you are at your most fundamental level – and I love her, with everything I am.

That would be my definition, of when I say…

I Love You