Dear Rich, I spent so long trying not to be in love with you that I catch my breath now whenever I realize that you're mine. And even during all those days that stretched to months when we were not talking, I knew that I would work my way back to you in one way or another.
A friend once asked me if I would regret how our relationship began. He wondered if I would wish for a "boy meets girl" story to tell. At the time I laughed it off, so determined that I would be with you, that the circumstances seemed immaterial. But now, I'm glad for how our relationship began. It settles my heart that we found each other, pursued each other, held onto each other when it was very often the hardest fucking thing to do.
And now we share a home and a daily routine. We have all those empty hours that we yearned for when our relationship was new. For all my stubborn certainty that you couldn't get away from me, I could never have imagined that this Sunday would exist. When I find your dirty t-shirt crumpled up on the bed, I still snatch it up and bury my face in it, not wanting that smell to ever get away from me.
I fell in love with you when I knew it would be hard, when it would be complicated, it could get messy. Those feelings are still at the center of how I feel about you, but over time they've become the kindling for a much brighter flame that I carry for you.
I love you for the way you put me off so that you could do the right thing by a failing relationship. I love you for your loyalty, fierce and constant. I love you for making a decision to be happy. I love tracing my fingers over the 27 scales on your red dragon tattoo. I love the way you tap the center console in the car whenever the sports announcers say something that might jinx the game. I love the rough way you throw a bag of goalie equipment, and the gentle way you move the cat off your chest to not disturb her. I love the way you fret over me, though I roll my eyes about it. I love that your opinion is the one that I go to first and last about anything. You are mine and I couldn't be happier about it.
And I will always be