To the one I haven’t met,
I first have to tell you that I never planned on loving you.
I had a husband. A wonderful husband.
And he loved me with every ounce of his being.
He would’ve stopped at nothing to give me everything.
He was my future.
And I promised to love him forever.
I never imagined you while I was dreaming about my future.
In all honesty, I’m scared to meet you.
I don’t know who you are, but I already know what I need from you.
I need you to understand that loving me involves loving my late husband.
What you love about me is the product of what I shared with him.
He is the father of my children and I search their mannerisms for hints of him each day.
For my kids, I will never stop talking about him.
I won’t erase him from our hearts or allow us to live as though he didn’t.
His pictures will still be visible, his name will still be said.
His birthday will be celebrated and his death will be honored.
Milestones will touch my family throughout the years, and my heart will cry each time, wishing he could see his children or hear the cry of his first grandchild.
Please don’t ask me to stop loving him. And please don’t assume I will stop missing him.
I need you to know that there will be places within my heart that you cannot possess. It’s not because I don’t trust you nor is it because I can’t love you.
But because those pieces of my heart will forever belong to the story that was written before you entered this chapter.
I need you to know that I realize you are different. I understand that your love for me won’t look the same. I need your patience as I try to remember what it’s like to be loved, especially when it’s coming from an unfamiliar heart.
I know this is a lot to ask of you.
I know you are probably scared to love me, wondering if you’ll ever compare to the memory of the man I loved first.
The truth is, my late husband left something for me to share with someone like you.
Because of his love, I see the world differently. And because of his death, I live each day passionately.
I will cherish every moment given with you.
I will pay attention to the small things that are embedded in your character.
I will enjoy the minutes in between moments, and the precious seconds between minutes.
I will honor your heart, value your time, and embrace your touch. I will not take our days together for granted, and I will always search for ways to let you know that I am holding your place in my heart, the same as I am holding his.
I don’t know who you are yet.
But if we ever meet, please love all of me.
The broken pieces, the healed wounds, and the visible scars on my heart.
I’m not damaged.
And I’m not hopeless.
And I’m scared.
Like delicate pottery pieced together after shattering, so is my heart in your hands. But if you are willing to gently hold it and protect it as best as you can, then I am willing to release my grip and allow my hands to begin writing our story.
Can’t wait to meet you.