Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Books on our Shelves || A Marriage Letter

This letter is one in a series of letters I write to remember mundane moments of my marriage that would otherwise slip away. I write with a dedication to hold tight to him and to remember how life looks right now at this very moment. The chance for these letters to shed light on our marriage before children for our children because they won't know us as newlyweds is a much loved and added bonus.

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Dear Jason,

When we were looking to buy a house, we talked a lot about libraries. We knew at twenty-five we probably couldn't afford a spare room just for our collection of books, but we acknowledged it was a dream for one day in our lives. We dreamed and we shopped, ushering ourselves through one home and then another and then a few more.

One house had floor to ceiling shelves, a rolling ladder, and double-sided fireplace in the master bedroom. We stood in awe of the reading that could happen right there in that space. I pictured oversize wing-back chairs and cozy flannels nestled in that nook of our room. You reminded me of the downfalls of the other rooms and we, sadly, said next.

The small house had three rooms and no space for us to turn into a reading area. We knew it wouldn't work for us because we wanted to grow our library and our family beyond what was there. We longed for a yard that could hold our dog and a garden -something this house couldn't promise. We shrugged, sighed and said next.

And then our house. The house with two stories and four rooms -one with a wall of beautiful white shelving. What was one woman's sewing room became our library-office-studio. The shelves that once held yards of multi-colored fabric is now home to our reading collection. Your books are there on those shelves intermingling with mine. Your nonfiction, my fiction. Your political interest, my creativity encouragements. It's all there on solid shelves -a microcosm of our marriage.

The evenings we spend beside one another with books open in our laps are precious and dear to me. Gorgeously penned paragraphs, giggled lines, and interesting content all shared back and forth over the quilt that warms our legs. You've bred an interest in history and biography into my reading habit. And to you I bring books that feel less feminine, more brave and fascinating. The books we trade, the stories we share, are rich and bountiful -just a small reflection of what's unfolding in the pages of You and Me.

Always cozy and caccooned at your right hand,
Am

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