From childhood I remember you. You were a wisp of a girl, easily frightened and readily angered. That anger, that tough exterior, that damnable fire always blazing about you controlled most. The afternoon I found you crying, alone, in the park was the afternoon you invaded my heart. You became the center of my universe when I held you and could feel your heart hammering away and your sobs wrenching through your frail frame. You were a wisp of a girl that I wanted to protect even then. The next day I watched you from afar as you pretended not to know me.
From teenhood I remember you. You entered womanhood much earlier than I entered manhood. The boys were always hovering close by. The teachers were always praising you. With poise and passion you embraced everything that came at you. I didn’t know what to do with you. I wanted to reach out to you, but I didn’t know how. Even though the glow of a woman was your armor, I could still remember the little girl that I found in the park. You were still the woman-child I wanted to protect. I continued to watch you from afar, wondering often if you knew me.
From the altar I remember you. I waited expectantly but anxiously for you to appear in the vestibule on your father’s arm. The sun shone from the windows above, spotlighting you like an angel from heaven. I don’t recall breathing until you crossed the sanctuary and stood toe-to-toe before me. Waiting for you to join me was almost unbearable. I was ever so glad that we chose a small chapel. You became my woman to protect. From that day forward, I had the freedom and the privilege of knowing you like no other.
Life has unfolded for us as the years have faded into the background like a black asphalt ribbon in the rear view mirror. The journey has been sweet and bitter. The adventure has challenged, always with promise. There is passion and fire still within you and you are still the ultimate in beauty of my universe. I lie beside you every morning quietly and expectantly, holding you in my arms. Waiting for you to wake is almost unbearable. There is so much I want to know. There is so much about life I want to share. My desire for you–to protect, to love, to know YOU–has never diminished.
Loving you comes from knowing you.
Loving you drives me to know more.