it began, for me at least, with that floating kiss. I was a junior in high school and you were a freshman (oh, the dramatics of it all). We had been flirting without abandon for weeks at that point, but never making it official - or as official as you can be in high school anyway - and without a thought in that flitty little mind of mine, I blew you kiss as you walked by the gym from football practice while I was warming up for my volleyball game. And enchanted, I smiled in delight as you pretended to follow my floating kiss as it tossed and turned through the air between us, until you threw your hand up and caught it, only to smack it on your cheek. And then, in that moment, my light switch had flipped. The spark of electricity surged up from nothing within my heart and has never burned out. Someday when our children ask me, 'When did you know?' I will tell them the story of that floating kiss.
Shortly after, we had our first kiss, like something out of a movie. And maybe I'm romanticizing it because I love you and I love our story and I am a big 'ole sap. (But even all that considering, I still don't think I am). After the school holiday dance, you walked me to my cellar door and we held hands and our lips met in the middle. The softest, mostly closed, first kiss this Earth has ever seen. And the house light was making the snowflakes look like crystals raining down on us. And I swear, to this day, static electricity passed between us. We were both smiling then, lips to lips, before reluctantly separating. As the legend goes, you danced through the gas station parking lot on your way home while I nearly flitted up the steps to wake my Mum up with a smile she describes as 'something clearly was different about this one.'
A few months later, you came over to an unsupervised house (sorry, Mums!) to find candles lit and me waiting in just black underclothes. You had a look on your face like I'll never forget - (honest grateful, joyful surprise maybe?) - and you leaned in to give me a hug and whispered in my ear, 'I can feel your heart beating.' I was so nervous and madly in love with you. We didn't do anything past second base if I remember correctly, because honestly the only thing about that night that mattered were those first few seconds: your facial expression, my heart racing, the electricity.
So young, so full of energy and intrigue. Everything new and full of mystery; eagerly pawing at each other in a dark room.
Then there's the kind of electricity that feels like red, hot poison streaming out of my heart - the kind I used to feel when we would decide to break up for awhile during those painful years of long distance. I'd see or hear that you were giving attention to some other lucky girl and the deep claws, that scarlet heat, of jealously would radiate from my chest out and all the way to my fingertips. I know you felt this same thing because we'd talk about it when we would inevitably come back to each other each time. This is the worst kind of electricity - and even though we haven't felt this in a long, long time - I still remember exactly how it feels. It burns and hurts, but there is no denying that it is a strong reminder of just how alive you are. And maybe it was the healing that came out of all the parts that were burned up from those moments that have made us stronger today - like volcanic soil; rich and fertile.
Relevant today, on our five year anniversary - there was that tunnel vision to your face- waiting for me to walk to you, and only you, from the back of the church aisle as all of our standing family and friends faded into the background. So much electricity, we could have lit up the whole town that day, maybe we actually did.
|Photo credit: Michelle Misner|
Electricity passes between us in moments now, frequent and often. Now as we are older, so comfortable and content. Everything familiar in a soothing way, unconsciously slipping limbs and hands into the spots worn down and smoothed by the years of continued presence of each other.
Your kiss to my forehead when you leave the house before anyone else is awake. Electricity waking me up.
The way you sleepily move over, lift your arm, and let me spoon up to you when I wake up in the middle of the night from a bad dream. Electricity keeping me safe.
The moment a kiss changes from the everyday variety to a subtle invitation. It's the extra pressure, or lean in, or the linger. Enough to make us pull away and stare at each other with smiling, questioning eyes - like, 'you keep this up, friend, and we're going to need to get a room.' Electricity. The kind that is like a magnet; primal and undeniable.
The zap that passes between us when we both laugh at the same exact time, at the same exact joke. When we both glance up to find the other one already looking, expectantly waiting to catch the other's eyes. We know undeniably what the reaction will be, and yet, we still stop to watch the smile spread across that face that is more recognizable than even our own and to hear the sound that brings life to the commonplace and warmth to our heart.
The hum between our hands while we walk together, changing from two singular people to one unit. We reach out to each other as we walk into unknown places, busy spaces, familiar surroundings, and the small moments when we need reminding that we are not alone in this big, sometimes scary, lonely world - that our sorrow is half sorrow when shared. But that we are also not alone in this small, sometimes deeply beautiful, joyful world - that our happiness is double happiness when shared.
|Photo credit: Michelle Misner|
But, what strangers may not realize is at the dot that is marked at that floating kiss, from that point; that one small humming moment - my life timeline became charged with the brilliant yellow of electricity. And since then has never been just my own life, but yours as well; ours. All this time, even while a part, it has always been our life. Running so closely parallel that it is nearly impossible to see that they aren't actually just one thick line.
One would be hard-pressed to find someone in our life that doesn't associate your name with mine or my name with yours. The first name is always followed by the other, it only matters which of us they met first. Brandon and Tab; Tab and Brandon. We are almost always mentioned as a pair which we cherish as a fortitude, rather than a shackle.
In the end, there are not words to express my thankfulness to run this life next to yours.
It is our electricity, my love, that keeps this life we create feel as though it is constantly showered with fireworks. What a beautiful and wonderful backdrop it gives our everyday. We are so very lucky.
happy anniversary, bud.
i love you.