“Nothing is ever lost to us, as long as we remember it.” —L.M. Montgomery
All Vernon’s sweet talking over the past couple of weeks sent me on a trip down the rabbit hole of memory…or at least my email folders. I also remembered these photos my sister Acacia took a year or two after we were married.
I know its very common in marriage to fall into basic living. It’s even expected. Romantic nothings become a thing of the past or maybe a luxury. Kids take over…or even without kids, complacency and busy-ness do. But its awfully nice, even if people fall into those comfortable ruts, when they have romantic memories to help them remember who they were together at earlier stages in their relationship. I think that letters sum it up the most. Keep them if you’ve got em…who cares if the kids run into them one day. They’ll secretly admire you more for it.
I came across this letter from Christmas 2012, when Vernon had gone back to England for the holidays, dropping Maki off in Norway first. He had a very hard time being away from us that year. It turned out that he suffered from Separation Anxiety. I only mention that because of the great irony he lives in now. He’s been separated from us for over a year. At least he seems to be dealing with this pretty gracefully.
Here are just some of the things that i love deeply about you: in no particular order.
Your Cowlick. Now, i would love your cowlick even if you did too, but the fact you have never liked it, probably makes me love it even more.
Your chatter, i love the spirit that produces your chatter. The way you have mothered Justine, from the first moments of her first boobah (that was very soon after the birth, remember) you have mothered her with such delight, warmth and love. It’s obvious to watch you two together. The way you have step-mummed Maki has been the most amazing thing in my life. Your dark hair (and whatever color it may one day become). Your red lipstick. The bit where your lower your back meets your even lower, lower back 🙂 Let’s love each other more from now one. I have missed you so much, and in missing you i realise how much i take you for granted at times, and maybe you have me a little? Can we start to dance together when i get back? Not in public (well not yet!), just in our house, in the evening. You choose the music and we can slow dance, close up, around the house. We need to make time for those small moments each day. I want you to let the romantic in me loose a little 🙂 I don’t want to miss out on loving you as much as i have.
I love you Alli xxxx
How can I not miss that voice? At least, I have bits of him to return to when I miss him. I sometimes stop and give thanks for the fact that I have such a kind man for a husband. I can’t imagine if I’d been with an abusive or angry partner that I secretly resented and had to start caring for him full time…I’d have to come to terms with it differently, I guess. But I don’t have that problem. He was always a supportive, deeply caring gentleman. When I struggled with him, it was mostly over cultural misunderstandings or his great brain that came up with questions I couldn’t answer. We weren’t the perfect couple, but we liked each other a whole lot.
Many moons ago, when I was waiting tables, I noticed that an older couple at one of my tables was eating in cold silence. Mischievous me, I asked them to tell me about how they first met. I probably shouldn’t have interfered, but they did light up as they told me the story. I always remembered that, watching people click back into good, loving memories…when they still saw their spouse the way they used to…and of course, it lasted into dinner.
Vernon and I are rich in memories. I still think he is this romantic, sweet guy, who is able to express himself so lovingly. He may not be able to write or type or even remember my name, but I see it in him still. I see he has a heart primed for the wonder of love. It’s like dating all over again. A little weird, when I put it like that, I admit. But there’s something to remembering the heart in your husband. It reconnects my own heart even now.
Love is strange.