God has a plan. It brought you to me. It brought you to me exactly one week after my 30th birthday, the day I decided to look around at the life I had built, let crumble and build back up again and whisper to myself, then declare out loud: It’s not so bad here. I bought a home. I have a career. I have my health. I have family who loves me unconditionally and unless I want to be, I am truly never alone.
And I was scared of you. I was scared that once I told you that I was taking my time with my body you would find a way to disappear, make it like you were never here. And though my skin had gotten thick enough to take the disappointment and the rejection, the most vulnerable part of me was bracing myself and preemptively choking back tears.
And then you didn’t do it. You listened. And held my hand. And prayed with me. And called me every day. And told me you loved me. The only thing I ended up choking back was the urge to let the “I love you” slip out before I felt it was time.
And now it’s been five years. A speck of dust in relation to the existence of this universe to some and eternity to others who seek a freedom outside of the bounds of marriage. Exercising the choice to be with you has allowed me to experience more freedom than I dared imagine. I am free of the what ifs. I am free to love deeply with all my might. I am free to exist out loud, in vivid color, in all of my natural, scarred skin with you without fear of judgment, of you turning away, running away from all of me which was deemed too much for others but somehow just enough for you.
It was always supposed to be us.