merry kissmas, ezra michael.
december 25th 2015. christmas past. christmas present. to my love part i. to my love part ii. to our lil beebs.

It felt more like December last year, the wind cutting into the layers piled upon your skin like a sharp knife, the snow that greeted us in late November, it was beautifully atmospheric, though if you asked any New Yorker, they would have complained about exactly what I was complaining about myself, the ice, the sleet, the temperatures that made it difficult to walk around the city in, an expansive contrast between the year to follow 2014 with weather that feels more like a bridge between fall and winter, mother nature not wanting to side with one or the other as the year closes out. In the final month of the year, you and I had only been seeing one another for about three months, depending on how you would define "seeing." If only I knew then that we would place our anniversary on the day of our very first date, the night you kissed me about twenty feet from the stoop of my apartment, my old apartment, I should say, the grounds where we sprinkled half of the foundation of our relationship, the other half sprinkled blocks away at your apartment. Do you remember, months after, when you told me that I could just move in with you, you know, if I wanted to? I do, and there wasn't a single part of me that worried. We were already living together in a sense, my clothes at your place, yours at mine, our lives connected in every sense of the word, no Vincent, no TJ, but we still had purpose within one another, learning and growing with every new moment. Deciding to live with you was one of the easiest decisions of my life, Ezra. I wanted it too. The timing wasn't quite right, though.

Months of traveling from film set to film set would put a damper on me every truly living with you until later in the year and I can't say I'm upset it panned out the way that it did. It makes me wonder why I was so nervous that first December, why I was so scared to tell you to just come over to have food with me, George, and some of my mates on Christmas night while they all played cards and I sipped on whiskey to keep myself warm. I remember telling you it was happening, too, but I couldn't bring myself to tell you to come over to stay with me, to stay in my bed that night because if there was anything I wanted that year, it was you. I wanted so badly to be yours in the way that poets describe ("Every word you write is the purest poetry. I wish I had written it. I feel every word you write so deeply. You put me in touch with my own soul."), to not be confused about our intentions with one another, to be your girlfriend and to have that title with you, for you to be mine, as well.

It didn't work out that way. It didn't work out the way we wanted it to for longer than either of us would care to admit, but the journey was worth it, I believe it with every nerve in my body electrified because of you, it was all worth it because of where we ended up, where we are now. Life was much simpler back then, there weren't too many responsibilities within our relationship, we didn't have a child on the way, we didn't live together, we didn't even have Vincent following us around ready for us to trip on his excited paws. We did as we wanted to, we were free to travel and see the world as two people who couldn't be held down by anything other than each other. Sometimes I feel bad that I took your freedom away, your ability to live for just yourself rather than for me, for TJ, for Vincent. That's poorly articulated because I know that I wasn't the one who stripped it from you, you and I decided on this life together, we chose it. I believe that we were fated in a way, that it was all mapped out for us, it always was, with a connection and chemistry like this, how could it not be? You don't hear about a love like this every day where two people can feel so deeply in a way that you can't help but wonder if they truly share the same heart.

We didn't have to take this path. That's the funny thing about fate, it's written out for you, but you have all of these options, a slew of them, and you have to make that decision, to go right or to stay left. In my heart I know you feel the same, you wouldn't have wanted to taken the opposite path. In the bathroom on that day in April, beyond the tears and the rooted fear of what was to come, neither of us felt like this was something we should remove from us. I don't know if I would have felt that way had it been anyone else coming in to find me, a splotchy mess on the floor. I know I wouldn't have. We gained so much, we've progressed and overcome so many obstacles in our way and only ended up stronger, our feelings deeper. I can't help but want to reminisce on the times when it was easier, when we lived like adults who were more carefree, if you could even say either of us were ever carefree. Maybe in a way your freedom has been lifted, but think of all that we've gained, think of the life and the home we've created, how could that not be something to be proud of, especially during the holidays when you're meant to be with family. Who knew if either of us ever thought it would happen like this, but it did, and looking back, I'll take the future any day, but I refuse to take it without the past where it all began.

I can't tell you the number of pine needles I've found stuck to the bottom of a countless number of socks. I've told Vincent that we're never getting a real tree again out of frustration and he would look at me, either greedy for a treat or confused if I'm asking him if he wants to go out, and somehow with his his perked up from its original position between his paws while he lays under the tree on his bed, his new command post for the holiday season, the frustration fades and I remember why we decided on a real tree and not an artifical one that comes with the branches already attached, sometimes the lights too, but it doesn't come with the experience of finding a tree (in this case a cat too) and the fresh smell we wake up to every morning when we go downstairs. It's one of the smallest traditions to have, but it's one of our earliest too, this year being our second year, although it was done in a very different way. Christmas for me as a little girl was always very much the same, festive, ungodly hot, relatives at my grandma's house until she passed away. It wasn't like Christmas here in the states where everything is such a big production with lights and music and the cold weather I had only ever seen in movies around this time. Don't get me wrong, it was festive back home, it still is, but nothing compares to a New York Christmas with the lights, Rockefeller Center, the people albeit some of them moody and miserable, always find a way to make you want to believe that people do have some holiday spirit left inside them. I wouldn't want to spend it anywhere else after being lucky enough to spend so many here since I came to the states myself.

Two years ago I spent Christmas at home, George and I rising early with the sun on Christmas morning as we went to Bondi to watch the sunrise with cups of espresso. It was a gorgeous sight, watching the sky turn from dark to orange these shades of grey that would turn into blue. One year I want us to experience that. I want you to experience Christmas through the lens I've seen it from since I was a child. It's vastly different, but I want you to have that Christmas experience with me. I want TJ to have it too. Some of my fondest memories stem from being on the beach the week of Christmas, the day of, and on Christmas Eve. There wouldn't be an extra layer in sight, we would be in our bathing suits, my mum talking to her sisters about Boxing Day, my dad with some of my younger cousins on the floor as they assembled a train set, all of us older kids fleeing to the beach to escape and find some sanity with a bottle of something cheap in hand. I miss the beach, I miss the sand and the surf. I miss breakfast with my parents and my nephews and sisters. I can't wait to introduce you, formally, and not through a Skype call, to show you where I've from the way that you've shown me New Jersey. I can't wait until you're able to see what's so special about where I come from on a regular day and on a holiday, as well. There aren't many people willing to make that flight, it's a long one, but I know come December next year when I've to be over there to do my play, I know that you and TJ will be right there with me. For right now I might not be able to be in my physical home, but being in my emotional home with you, the man I want to share my life with, what else could I want more than that?

I know the last few weeks haven't been the easiest for us, they've been hard on us both, but I want you to know that I never saw Christmas without you, I never saw the holidays with us apart. I never truly saw an end for us even if it felt like everything was crashing down around us. I'm sorry I let myself get inside my head the way I have. I don't want to play pregnancy and hormones, though perhaps they do play a role, I own up to my own mistakes and have my own set of regrets when it comes to the things I've said to you. I want you to know that here is where I want to be, with you, with our family. No one has touched me in a way that you have, Ezra. No one. And no one ever will, not in this way. I hope that this first Christmas spent with me was better than you anticipated because that is what you deserve, baby. I love you and I cannot wait for the next chapter to start in our lives.