Thank you so much to everyone who has sent such kind comments - it really means the world to me. Just a short one-shot to tide everyone over for now. Hope you like it - if so, please review!
I am writing this letter to you, for you to read on Christmas Day. Although I have traditional gifts for you, somehow this seems so much more important. Please know when you read this that the words come from my heart.
I've always been very good at expressing my opinion on any given subject. I've delivered speeches and seminars. I'm accustomed to winning most disputes. And yet, when I want to relate my emotions or feelings, at times I'm unable to do so. It may be fear – fear of rejection, fear of declaring myself. It may be that I am simply unsure of how I feel. And often it may be that I do not know how to put my emotions into words. In this instance, the reason that I'm putting pen to paper is that my feelings, my emotions, are so immense, so overpowering, that I cannot describe them aloud. So I will write them down, and perhaps I will find the words I need.
I didn't like you at first. I suppose that's not a secret – I'm not known for my subtlety. You were arrogant, stubborn, overbearing. You believed in so many things I dismissed as irrelevant. In a way, I felt threatened by you – you dared to question my motives, my beliefs, in a way no one had ever dared before. For the first time in my life, I faced arguments every day – arguments that I lost as often as won. Eventually, I began to realize that many of the character flaws I had ascribed to you could also be applied to me. On the heels of that first realization came another, even more significant. I began to respect you. You demanded that of me, and made me earn it in return.
Trusting you was another matter altogether. I think I trusted you even before I liked you. One facet that shone brightest in your character was your dedication to protecting me, to protecting those around us. You saved my life more than once. But you've saved me in so many other ways, so many times. I could not have admitted it then, but I know now that I depended on you before I ever realized I could. And you – you amazed me, how willingly you gave your trust. From the start, it seems you knew something about me that few others saw. Your trust was a precious gift – a gift I treasured beyond all else.
We were strangers to each other in the beginning. Even as we worked together, we knew almost nothing of each other. I preferred it that way – I'd learned from bitter experience to remain distant, aloof – a self-contained unit. But little by little I began to learn more about you – what made you who you were. Sometimes the knowledge was disturbing, and sometimes it was heartening. But it was always you – small pieces of you that were woven together in an unbreakable fabric. Then the impossible happened. Somehow, you uncovered small pieces of me, brought them into the light. I held my breath, but you stayed. I displayed weakness, but you stayed. I suffered, felt pain and heartbreak – and you stayed. For that alone I love you.
But what is love? Many people have tried to define it. Doctors, poets, artists. Is it passion? In a lovely way, yes. But it's so much more than just the physical. It is friendship, tenderness, trust. It is laughter and tears, sorrow and joy. It is uncertainty and kindness, affection and intimacy. It's a touch that brings comfort, an embrace that heals wounds. It is the silent moments between two people, when no words are needed. I know this because I have known you. You gave these wonderful gifts to me. I have no choice but to give them to you.
Every day I wake up in your arms. We spend most of our hours together. And yet, when my eyes fall upon you without warning, my heart skips a beat. I find myself hungry for the sight of you – and once I've seen you, I simply must touch you. When our eyes meet, I tremble with a hunger that still surprises me. Walking next to you, being a part of you, fills me with a pride that I'm sure everyone must see. The quiet moments together in the evening are ours – I selfishly guard them and crave them always. When you kiss me, my world tilts sweetly – my fondest wish is that it never rights itself. And at the end of the day, I reach for your hand without looking, because I know it will be there.
Who you are is revealed in so many wonderful ways. The way you wrestle with your son – and let him win. Your willingness to let me to see you at your most vulnerable. Your patience and forgiveness when I stumble, or can't find the right words. You are happiness, honor, loyalty, love. Your spirit is true. You are a protector, a father, a friend, a lover, a son. You do all these things so well. And because of your faith in me, you've made me believe I may someday truly deserve you.
I am still learning, every day, from you. You are my shining example; you are the person I look to for counsel and support. I may not always do the right thing, but I promise I'll always try. You inspire me with your empathy and your selflessness. Know that I stand with you and for you, that I will never leave you. I am your defender, your lover, your friend. I will tell you I love you every day of our lives. Our failures and successes belong to both of us. I promise I will never hide from you – I will bare my soul without hesitation. You are a fundamental part of my life. I can no longer pass through the days alone – I need you always. And I will cherish every day with you as if it was the first, and the last.
I find that, having revealed myself, I am afraid. It is not logical, but it remains, regardless. My fear is that I have not adequately expressed just how important you are to me. So, I finish this letter with one last thought. What you mean to me – the most important things – cannot be written. My hope is that you will feel them in my touch, see them in my eyes, and know them in my love. My husband.