My Love

Aerin Foutz

My love, Nov. 12

Rain drops are spattering on my windowsill, begging me to go out for a walk, but it is bitterly cold and walks in the rain just aren’t the same without you. I’d rather just sit by the fire and write this anyways. It may sound silly, but writing you letters helps me feel closer to you, and it also makes me feel just a little less homesick for you. I know it’s been awhile since I’ve come to see you; I promise I’ll visit soon, probably in the spring when the daffodils start to bloom. They’re still my favorite flower, you know. That hasn’t changed, even though it’s been so many years since you pointed them out to me.

The weather fits my mood today. I feel like hiding here forever. I don’t want to go out for groceries or even to get Chinese takeout. My depression has been pretty bad recently, and the rainy skies that usually make me so happy are just bringing me down further. I promise I’ll work on that. I know it makes you sad when I’m sad.

I should really start reading that last book you recommended to me. I promise I’ll get around to it soon; I want to save the best for last. I bought it, and it is already sitting on my shelf of favorites because I know that if you love it, I will too.

My love, Dec. 16

It snowed today. I haven’t seen snow in several years; I moved here to escape it. It’s so cold outside, it feels like it will seep into my bones and freeze me from the inside out. Ptolemy is trying to catch the big fat flakes as they fall past the window—he is dreadfully confused by it all. There’s ice on my window that makes the world look like a Christmas ornament. Speaking of Christmas ornaments, I decorated my itty bitty tree yesterday. It’s covered in the memories of our trips—Rome, Crete, Cairo, Venice. They’re all so vibrant and cheerful. I, however, am not. Today is a day for bourbon and the Blues as I revisit some of my happiest memories with you. They live in the shoebox my hiking boots came in—so many pictures, so many crazy adventures.

Remember that time when we climbed to the top of that dried-up waterfall? I had on the worst possible shoes for rock climbing and ended up having to take them off and climb barefoot. It was certainly worth it, though: the view of the lake was stunning from up there. We spent the day laying on that giant, sun-warmed rock, and you told me about growing up in Kansas and how amazed you were by the incredibly beauty of the mountains the first time you saw them. I loved how your whole face lit up when you were excited about something.

My love, Jan 26

Remember our first kiss? You were so cute and awkward and shy. I smile every time I think about it. We stood under that ancient oak by the natural history museum, and you asked if I’d mind. Of course I wouldn’t, silly.

And there was the day you brought me Ptolemy because I was still sad about my dad’s funeral. You let that furry little ball of chaos loose with that huge red bow around his neck, and he kept tripping over it. I think I still have a picture of that laying around here somewhere…

I was just thinking about all the little things you used to do before you left. Like the way you'd kiss my cheek every morning when you got out of bed. And write notes on the fogged glass in the bathroom while I was in the shower. And all the times you brought me ice cream just to remind me you loved me. It’s bittersweet, but there are so very many good memories.

My love, Feb. 14

I am so terribly lonely. And sad. And ever so slightly drunk.

I bought a plant today; I thought it might cheer me up. It did a little. It is called Song of India or Dracaena Reflexa if you want the scientific name, which I know you do. It’s beautiful. I had to move some of my books to make room for it in here. You always used to say that my apartment had the cleanest air in the city. You were probably right. Someday, this place is going to look like a full jungle—I accept this and look forward to it—and Ptolemy will be the little tiger he is at heart, lying in ambush for unsuspecting feet. I can see it now. That would be nice, both for him and me, though I can’t say I'd look forward to the water bill.

My love, Mar. 17

I’ve started running again. I think it’s really helping my mood. I make myself get up at seven every morning, and I’ve given myself a deadline of 2pm for writing my article for the day. They’re small changes, but they really seem to be making a difference. I feel so much less depressed; seeing the sun in the morning is so nice. And having a reason to get up is a nice change of pace—it got so hard to do for a while there.

I think I’ve made a friend. Her name is Susan, and she works at that little coffee shop on the corner you showed me. I went in yesterday morning, and she recited my order to me before I even opened my mouth. She’s kind of cute and a little geeky, I think. She loves coffee, Mark Twain, and puzzle games. It’s been such a long time since I made a new friend, it’s almost a little exhilarating. I wish you could meet her; I think you’d really like her.

My love, Apr, 14

I visited you today. I planted some tulips for you, next to the peach tree, last Autumn. They've bloomed, and they're red. They look nice against your gravestone. I love that I’m allowed to plant things there—do you know how rare it is to find a graveyard that allows that these days? I would like to have a full flower garden there someday so your grave never looks empty or neglected.

I took Ptolemy with me in a picnic basket, and he just curled up next to your gravestone. It’s odd, and maybe I’m just crazy, but it seems like he knows that’s where you are and that you can’t come back home again. We miss you. So very much.