Since I don't take these opportunities to explain the depth of my love nearly enough, I reasoned it was time. That's a good enough reason, but mainly it's just because.
I've told you many times before how I really hope you know how much I love you. That's not to say that I shouldn't do a better and more consistent job of trying to explain it when I find the words. It doesn't help at all that when I envision how wonderful you really are in my mind and heart that I end up feeling inadequate in contrast, but then I remember the conversation we had where it was made clear that for better or worse, we chose each other. We didn't build this relationship on need, we built it on choices and I believe that is what makes it so strong and so permanent.
In choosing you I also chose to surrender many of the things I long held as survival tools. I have learned to have weak moments and feel insecure without having to hole myself up in a cave about it for fear of anyone else seeing. I don't feel any need to have to hold you suspect like I do with so many people. You've proven to me that no matter how low I get you're always there either knowing what I need or loving me enough that when you don't know what I might need you'll simply say "Whatever it is you need me to do or be for you right now, I need you to tell me what it is." For a man who has spent the majority of his life feeling like there is a bomb about to go off somewhere and I have no safe place to hide, it is extraordinary to feel that no matter what happens - you are always my safe place.
I cannot stop wishing I grew up with you, not because I want to create a butterfly effect in our lives that changes us from what we are (because I really like what we are) but because I want to go back and kick the shit out of anyone or anything that ever hurt you or made you feel less than the treasure you are. No problem though, I've made it my personal mission to do it now and from now on so that'll have to do.
It comes down to this, really. I am well aware that we're dying as I write this, I am, you are, and so is everyone else whose eyes come across these words. Death has been a constant figure in my life having surrounded it and even once or twice sneaked in and tried to claim me, and as a result I've learned to be unafraid of it. I think that when you become aware of your own mortality and how truly insignificant you are in the grand scheme of things, all you can really hope for is that when your own time comes you've done enough of the right things to be okay with it. That and that the people you leave behind know it and know how you really feel about them.
So here it is, for you and the whole world to see. Should any number of things occur by chance or by reason at any time to take any of us away from one another forever, don't ever wonder if I know how much you love me, because I do. You should know that I've never felt as loved or validated or sacred in 35 years of living as I have in the past four + years I've spent with you and almost all of that is because of you. Of course I look forward to more, but I honor what I have had the good fortune to experience so far. I never knew life could feel like this, that I'd ever feel any sense of ease or peace with myself because I'm always raging against something or other, including myself. You've been my peace, my ease, and my calm and I don't have gratitude enough to tell you what it has done for me that you are those things and more. You have singlehandedly made my life worth living, and this is a life that has been made phenominal by an entire cast of supporting players! All of my time with you, good and bad, has resulted in the same wondrous thing - it has systematically made me feel less like that scared, frightened little boy that I carry around like a tumor and more like a man that stands out in a crowd of people who sadly will never know what it feels like to be this loved and adored. How incredible it is to know that I've chosen someone who makes up where so many others have pathetically lacked. I appreciate the kind of care you take of me and the way you force me to look at life, and all of the laughter that comes along with not taking oneself too seriously. Little by little and in lasting ways, you replace all of the past bullshit and suffering with something I can be sustained on.
So if ever you have to suffer being in a hospital room and I'm not able to respond to you because I'm on a ventilator or in a coma, or ever already gone before you get the opportunity to be ceremonious and try and figure whether or not I know how much you love me when precious seconds are ticking away, believe me - I know. I know how much and then some, so don't ever question and never wonder about that, you hear me? The question is answered, you never have to live without knowing because you heard it from me.
And should the role be reversed, you need to know already that I will never have cause to ask the same kind of question of you, because I've been given the answer already. I get it all the time, every day. Everyone should be so lucky.