A Love Letter to My Wife. She Won't Read This
But you might be inspired by it
When we first got together 10 years ago, my wife and I had to endure a long-distance relationship. 1000 km between us. During that time, I started a tradition that we still keep up to this date, 10 years into our relationship: love letters. Cheesy, right?
I would write her long emails from time to time. These digital love letters have become a mutual amusement. My wife reciprocated after I wrote a couple. It has stayed this way through our first year of long-distance and we've kept it going until now. Less frequently but not forgotten.
Because I'm a writer - and a sucker for structure - even my love letters had their outline. I mean, I didn't draft and edit for days, but I gave them some thought. My brain just likes structure. I'll show you how. Let's call it:
Love letter 101
- I'd honor the occasion. Sometimes, in our long-distance relationship, we missed special occasions like a birthday, valentine's day, or another holiday. I started this tradition on one of those days. So, I honored it at the beginning of the email. But, really, love needs no special event. It's always the perfect occasion to be thankful for what you have. A fine Tuesday will suffice too. Spontaneity is sexy, I hear.
- I'd remember the time. In the beginning - as young lovers do - we used to remember and celebrate every little occasion: our first month, three months, half a year, and so on. Still, now, we enjoy celebrating anniversaries like our first meet-up, the day we became a couple, the day we moved in together, and more. Picking those up in an email always leads to fond memories. It's not that we expect to get a mail for every occasion. But they're always welcome.
- It got a little spicy. In a long-distance relationship, we missed each other. We missed our bodies too. From time to time, our love letters got a little spicy. That's a good thing. We didn't see each other for months sometimes. An extra effort to enjoy our connection has always been appreciated by my wife and me.
- I show gratitude. Whenever I wrote a love letter, this was the longest part. Showing gratitude for the things she gave me. The most memorable moment for me was when my wife decided to move in with me. 1000 km away from her family, her friends, and her job. So that I could finish my college degree. A few years later, I reciprocated when we moved to my wife's hometown to start our own little family. Gratitude is no one-way street. Make an effort to not let it be this way.
- I outline improvements I want to make. No relationship is perfect all the time and it won't ever be without commitment and dedication. This also meant improving in areas I knew I needed to improve in. So with every letter, I tried to outline a few ideas. My wife did that too. Over the years, we got better and better at achieving these goals and, in turn, further deepened our relationship.
- I end with a signature. No, not the one my colleagues get on my work mail. We're not that close. I always close with some form of a "signature". It wasn't the same every time. Whether it's a short line and a few emojis, a fitting quote, or just an affirming one-liner, it's a way to close with affection.
- Love, love, love. Lastly, a love letter is full of love. Obviously. Who doesn't like to be loved and hear about it? Too often, we underestimate the impact of just a few lines of fondness toward one another. It feels good in the first month. It still feels good after 10 years.
My wife and I are lucky to have been together, living together, enjoying each other's company. In these days of the (hopefully slowly ending) pandemic, a small gesture like a heartfelt love letter to the partner far away or even the one sitting right next to you on the sofa goes a long way.
Facing challenges shouldn't complicate a relationship. It should rather strengthen it. We learned this the hard way - the hardest way imaginable - when we lost our little daughter last year. Although this was and still is the saddest of times we've ever had to face, it once more reminded us how strong our connection is. We're strong enough to deal with even the worst circumstances, we're strong enough to keep going. We're strong enough together.
Loving last words
Oh, have I told you why my wife will never read this? It's nothing sad this time. Knock on wood.
My wife is half German, half Turkish. She speaks from her heart. She listens carefully. But she won't read this. Because she doesn't speak English. So, she never reads my stories. Don't worry though. She knows everything I've said here. I have told her numerous times in 10 years. She might even be annoyed by now.
Why would I write this then? Well, this is for me… and to inspire you.
I've always loved writing. Now I'm writing about love. Full circle, you know.