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Taura,

You deserve the best the heavens can possibly provide someone.  But you got me, instead.   So I vow to try to live up to what you deserve.

I vow to do my best to get over my own shit and be the best partner I can be.  I will fall short of that vow.  But I vow to keep trying.

I vow to make a safe and supportive space for you, and for us, so you can always talk to me about anything, anytime.  Your feelings.  Your fears.  Your desires.  My flaws.  My mistakes.  My repeated mistakes.  How wonderful I am, in spite of it all.  

I vow to do my best to listen to you.  To hear you.  And when I don’t listen to you I vow to grant you permission to give me a dope slap.  (One should suffice.)

I vow to say “Yes, dear.”  

I vow always to carry your heavy gardening rocks, to massage your muscles when they ache – which they shouldn’t, since I’m the one carrying the heavy rocks – to gently push you to be a better you.  I vow to eat your nightshades, to make you tea, to not leave my wet clothes in the washer until they smell, to try to notice my little piles everywhere and put them away.

That one’s a stretch goal.

I will always have your back, come to your rescue, respond to your needs, keep your confidence, reassure you when you doubt, remind anyone who would question it how extraordinary you are.  You will never be alone on this journey.  Even when you want to be alone… during which times I vow to give you your space and stop hovering.

Hovering.

Hovering.

Where was I?

I cannot vow to stop telling corny jokes.  A man can only go so far.   But I do vow always to pick up after Hydro.  Even when it’s all watery and terrible and it’s all I can do to just toss some dirt on it and scurry away and hope maybe I can get it later.  

I vow to be the best stepfather I can be to your extraordinary daughter and daughter-in-law, Ashley and Kora.  And I vow always to make a warm, loving space for your vast extended family of aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and dear friends.  

I vow not to take you for granted.  If I do take you for granted, you get another dope slap.

I could vow to wake up each morning grateful beyond words for the good fortune with which the universe has seen fit to gift me… by connecting me to you.  But I don’t have to.  Because I already just do.  Naturally.  Organically.  Every morning.  I don’t see that ever changing.

Most of all I will just love you.  Your heart.  Your compassion.  Your wisdom.  Your courage.  Your cooking.  I’ll always to let you be who you are, how you are, when you are.  Because I love who you are.  I can’t imagine not.  

And that’s not a vow, by the way.  That’s just an is.

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