Love Letters for the Soul

It was 4:30 in the morning, the day before Christmas Eve, when we said goodbye on the corner. The fluorescent lights of the convenience store behind us lit up our troubled faces that tried for humor and smiles, but the imminent arrival of her taxi to the airport kept us anxious.

I hate being apart from her.

For three months, I had assured myself that her trip back to Canada wouldn’t be such a big deal; we’d be moving there together soon, and it was only three weeks. But the growing pressures of packing, preparing our place of work for our replacements, saying goodbye to so many friends, and interviewing potential adopters for our pet bird had taken their toll. I was dreading being alone in a house that was no longer our home, and in a country that we were having trouble letting go of.

When the driver came, she gave me a firm hug as he took her luggage. And then she passed me a little letter. “Open it when you get home,” she said, smiling in the way that had captured my heart when I saw it for the first time so many years ago.

The envelope wasn’t addressed, but it had a number: 22. The date.

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christmasis a hard time to be without your loved ones. I know, I’ll be missing you like crazy while I’m in Canada. To stave off the loneliness, I’ve left you a letter somewhere in the house for every day that I’ll be gone. Open them all at once, on their given day or out of order. It’s up to you. Just know that I love you, and will miss you more than I can say. ♡ Love, Nicky”

Our relationship has never shied away from public displays of affection, or grand gestures of love, but this was, perhaps, the most meaningful of all of the ones I have received in the past. In a moment, with a single action, my partner had transformed the depressing slog of deconstructing the life we had built in Japan into a treasure hunt. If I took care of the pile of clothes, would I find another letter? If I made myself some tea, or reached for the coat I’d need to go outside for the day, would there be a letter tucked into a secret pocket?

All through those three weeks, I cleaned and I searched, and I packed, and read her letters. Letters that can not be entirely shared here, but I will show you the first. It is in keeping with the energy of our union–we are a story in motion. A narrative unfolding in the most glorious way.

And even when we must be apart, the imprint of her affections remain.

From Alex-Hurst.com; Love Letters for the Soul

“Once upon a time there was a girl who dreamed many dreams. She dreamed of being a farmer, a teacher, a veterinarian, a clinician, a writer and an artist, among other things. She dreamed more dreams than were possible to achieve and she knew it. She didn’t know what dream she should follow. They were all so appealing. Then one day the girl met another girl who also had many dreams. She was smart and pretty and when she got a new dream, she knew how to make it real. This was very impressive to the first girl and she asked to walk along with her new friend. To her surprise, she said yes! So they moved away together and had a little garden. They taught children and raised animals. They wrote stories and drew pictures together. And most important, they lived happily ever after. Thanks for making all my dreams come true. Love, Nicky

Happy Valentine’s Day, my love.

40 thoughts on “Love Letters for the Soul

  1. I LOVE THIS!!!!!! What a creative, loving, positive couple you are. I’ve had reason, lately, to think about lasting love and what potential pain (like loss) opening one’s self to this kind of love requires. What a bright, amazing strength couples like you two bring into the world. It benefits everyone. Thanks for sharing this personal story.

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    1. Thank you, Trista! There is definitely that fear. We are both nervous about opening ourselves up to other people, but I don’t know, it just naturally sort of happened that way for us. Maybe it had something to do with how we met (innocuous book forum that promoted NOT telling people your gender), the fact that we are only a week apart in age (and therefore have more cultural/generational understanding of each other), or just our mutual personalities, but it just worked… I never hesitated to open myself up, and I am very glad I did. 🙂 @njmagas taught me courage.

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  2. “It is in keeping with the energy of our union–we are a story in motion. A narrative unfolding in the most glorious way.”

    I love this.

    Thank you so much for writing this post, it’s beautiful.

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    1. I’m glad it touched you in some way. I don’t often share personal stuff, but this was something I felt would be good to put “out there” for some. 🙂

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    1. We were definitely very fortunate…. a very random set of circumstances led us to meet…. and how different our lives would have been if not for that exact moment!

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    1. She told me that she hid the letters the morning she left, haha. I couldn’t find #4 for a really, really long time, and she couldn’t remember where it was…. in the end, she found it in a box of stuff I’d moved aside off of her own desk. ^^;

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    1. Thanks, Sara. 🙂 I was hoping it would give people those feelings. Risks are essential for happiness…. and it doesn’t always pay off. But when it does… ❤

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    1. Hey, thats basically the same as us! We met online, and she lived in Vancouver and I lived in the San Francisco area…. we chatted every day for hours for about four years before we finally realized that what we shared wasn’t just friendship. Our first year together we were still apart. We only started living together once we both dropped everything to come to Japan. 🙂

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    1. Thank you! And good to see you again! 😀 I swear I thought I was following your blog, but I guess as usual my phone didn’t do anything but flip the blue icon to orange. 😛 Rectified now!

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    1. Thank you, Mei-Mei, though I’m sorry it brought tears! Happy Valentine’s Day to you too, even if it’s a day late now. 🙂

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  3. You make a magical couple. Thank you for sharing these beautiful gestures — the world is in need of them. I wish you both many, many years of happiness together!

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    1. Thank you so much, Rosie! That is a very sweet sentiment. Yes, I thought it was a good time to share it as the last few weeks have gotten very cynical in my circles, especially with the election cycle looming.

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  4. I think your decision to share this now, at least partly because of the growing nastiness and cynicism around us, is exactly right. More and more, decent, loving, kind people seem to be feeling that they’re the last of a disappearing species. This tale is proof that it isn’t so — and besides, what’s not to love about someone creative enought to come up with that letter-hiding? That’s one of the most delightful stories I’ve heard in some time, and the best part is that it’s real.

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  5. Amazed anyone still handwrites.(I have illegible handwriting. I’ve had my parents pissed off at me, because they couldn’t read part of a cheque.) I’m sure you’ve packed the letters away to reread one day.

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  6. Alex, I just caught up to this now and it’s beautiful…you are so lucky, girl! I’m happy to know that there’s someone like that in your life. (Go, Nicky!) Thanks for sharing that moment. It reminds me that I need to take that time to show my loved ones how much I care. 🙂

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