love of my life,

i have never needed anyone the way i need you. it makes me do crazy things like make special little places to leave simple love letters, just cause i want you to know how much you're on my mind and how much i miss you when you aren't around. i lose my mind a little when you're not with me, but i have a feeling you might've noticed that already.

before i met you, i was a human disaster. joey had been my lifeline for so many years; he kept me on track, even if things weren't ever perfect, he was familiar and i got comfortable and he helped me keep my life together despite my tendency to go off the rails. when the love between me and him began to fade, it was like the reason i stayed for so long was because i was scared of what it might mean to suddenly be on my own. i was afraid that i would go right off the rails again and not be able to function on my own. i stayed with joey after things faded because i didn't know how to be alone anymore, and it terrified me. so when i got cast for the show and knew i'd be moving to georgia, it was finally time to let go. of course, then i only latched onto someone else who would take care of me--tan. we had a strange but intense relationship through filming in atlanta, and then when he came on a trip with my dad and step mom and me, that was when we decided to break things off, mostly for fear of ruining both our friendship and working relationship... unfortunately, this still went to shit, but we still tried.

my mom wasn't a touchy feely person. she was standoffish, kept me at arms' length, and ultimately disappeared from my life when my parents split. it's probably a cliche, but i think i grew up craving that love and affection i didn't have, for someone to accept me and love me for who i was, and i spent most of my adult life searching for this, thinking i had it, and finding out i really didn't. until i met you. you came into my life in a scary, transitional time for me. i had lost one relationship, and another was already failing, and in that floundering, i was grabbing at straws, trying to convince myself i had feelings for people i didn't. but then i started to get feelings for you. and i knew they were real. i pushed them down because i was scared of them. i knew if i let myself feel that deeply that quickly, if i fell for you like that, that you could hurt me. but you didn't let me hide for long. you tore down every wall i had and showed me what it could feel like to be loved without limit, to be loved so fearlessly.

since you came into my life, my whole heart has changed. i'm not perfect. i made some mistakes since we've been together that i will regret for the rest of my life. but your forgiveness, your empathy, your willingness to love me in the face of my flaws, has shown me that i am more than those things. i'm not just the guy who fucked up, who still fucks up and doesn't always get it right. i can be a best friend, a lover, a husband, a partner, and a father. i can be more than the sum of my parts. with you, i feel free to be my true self, to live every truth i have, and to not be ashamed of it. from every painted toe to borrowing jvn's heels, you still love me and support me and encourage me. you have shown me what it really means to love someone. i am learning to love better by watching you love me. you're so understanding and patient with me, you let me have my moods and help me through them. you sit with me when i'm stuck in my dark place, and you don't force me to come out, you just remind me that you'll be there when i do. you show me such care and compassion, putting my needs before your own more often than not. you show me every day what it means to be a truly kind, loyal, generous human being, and you make me want to be the best version of myself that i can be.

i know i'm a lot. i know loving me isn't always easy. i know my moods can sometimes get in the way, and i know that handling me on my bad days is certainly far from a walk in the park. but you do it. you do it day in and day out. you love me when i'm terrible. you love me when i'm taking things out on you that you don't deserve at all. you love me when i'm feeling broken. you love me when i can't love myself. you give me the support and care that i spent my life in search of--not just in search of receiving, but also for someone to offer it to. i want to always be the one who helps you, cares for you, puts a smile on your face. i wanna be there when it's shitty, i wanna be there when you wanna tell me to fuck off, i wanna be there when it's a mess. i wanna be there day in and day out, when it's sexy and when it's a mess. when we're making love or changing diapers. when we're moody from lack of sleep cause we were up caring for a newborn baby. when kieran gets here, you'll be my strength, and the absolute best partner i could ever wish for, and i have no doubt that you are going to be the most incredible dad to our little duck.

thank you for loving me the way you do. i can't wait to spend the rest of my life loving you even more every day.

your husband