post written by: Marc Chernoff
How Love Begins
The greatest thing you’ll ever learn
Is to love and be loved in return.
- Natalie Cole
On a chilly October night nine years ago…
I would have preferred not to write to you. In fact, about a week ago, I put a post-it note on my computer monitor that said, “What would Skyman do?” (Skyman is my cat). It was supposed to remind me not to do things that Skyman wouldn’t do.
Skyman would just wag his tail or wiggle his little nose, and hope that whoever he’s wagging or wiggling to understands that he’s hungry, or lonely, or in love, or whatever. But he certainly wouldn’t write a silly love letter to the coolest girl he knows. Because he can’t form complex thoughts. And because he’s smart enough not to be so stupid.
This evening, the post-it note fell off of my computer monitor and landed on the floor. And although post-it notes usually lose their stick after a few days, this one was different. It was still really sticky and shouldn’t have come unstuck. And it was light green, which is the color of your eyes. These were obvious signs I couldn’t ignore.
So I decided to write to you… To tell you that Hanging by a Moment is a totally awesome song. That Diet Coke tastes better when you smile. And that the world seems easier to understand today than it did yesterday.
But still not as easy to understand as two days ago, when a friend and I shared a three scoop 5 & Diner ice cream sundae at midnight. And decided that some people are like hot fudge and others are like hard candy. And I don’t remember why we decided that.
But it had something to do with friendship. And ice cream with two spoons instead of one. And later that night, after I dropped you off, I wanted to call you to ask whether you preferred hard candy or hot fudge, just to find out whether you’d sigh and giggle simultaneously when I’d ask. Because that’s what I think you’d do.
I didn’t call you because Skyman wouldn’t do that. He wouldn’t even know how to dial your phone number. Because a cat’s paws are not nearly as dexterous as human hands. Which must be nice for Skyman, because love is a lot simpler when you have paws.
Anyway, it’s midnight again. And I’m sitting up in bed with my laptop thinking about how our lives begin and end in the time it takes the universe to blink. Which isn’t too long. But long enough for letters that aren’t too long. Letters that ramble instead of saying what they want to say. Which is…
I wish you were here. Just breathing beside me.
Photo by: Kliefi