Some days, it's tough going. There's a rift in the way we talk to each other, in the way our gaze meets. It's never perfect, ever, because nothing ever is, but some days, it's harder. Tectonic plates shift, the sky opens up, the forest burns. We get sad and quiet and mean.
I love him so much.
There are snapshots of us together, cuddling or making faces. There are pictures of him, taken by me, of me, taken by him, of us in our most vulnerable places: bed, at the dinner table, sleeping. He comes with me to parties. We hold hands. We put our heads on each other shoulders. We cuddle on the train, or the bus, sharing headphones or simply just being, together. He brings me water when I'm thirsty, and I love him.
When there are storms, they are terrible. Brief though they may be, they cast a pall over the rest of our day together, and I can feel my brow furrow with the need to be right, the need to make him understand.
We fall into these traps, which aren't like storms: they're like quicksand, invisible to the naked eye. To climb out of them is exhausting, and you never move forward. You just lie on the sides, panting, trying not to die.
I love waking up beside him.
I love his voice, and especially his laugh.
I love his eagerness to share his day.
I love his triumphs.
I love his willingness to work on our quicksand moments, to acknowledge them and lend a hand.
I love his smile, and his eyes.
I love his vanity, that he likes to look good (and he does - he is a stone cold fox).
I love that, while he himself does not make things, he is agile and able to find out the best new things and be a bringer of light to his friends.
I love that he always has an opinion.
I love that he does the stuff he's interested in, instead of just talking about it.
I love that he's caring.
I love his tidiness and his need for order.
I love that he plays with the cat even though he is allergic to her.
I love that he complains about the duvet not covering his feet.
I love that he is kind.
I love that he buys me books, and that he reads.
I love that he cares enough about me that I can hurt him.
I love caring enough about him that he can hurt me.
I love that he knows my secrets.
I love his touch.
I love that he doesn't celebrate Valentine's Day, but he sort of will, for me.
I love him, without an asterisk, without a question mark.
There's so much good between us, and yet sometimes, all I can think about is the sand between my toes. I don't want that. I want all the other stuff to shine more than the crummy moments. I need to remember all these reasons, and a thousand other ones, when I'm skirting the edges of the quicksand.