A couple of years after she and I broke up, after four years together, I sat down to write about our relationship. I had no idea how much I would write or how it would turn out. But 17,000 words later, I had the story of us, in my words. I titled it "Unmelted Snow."
I can't remember if it was always my intention to let her read it or not. But after I had completed it, I printed it out on half sheets of paper, which I had torn by hand, bound it, and presented it to her.
No one has ever read it, except for me, her, and anyone she might have chosen to show it to. And while I'll probably never let anyone read the entire thing, today I present the introduction to that story, as I wrote it then. Unedited, except for our names.
(for Lily, of course... my hope, my inspiration, my love, my smile, and my sadness)
I do not know why one cannot see things clearly in the present, and yet once the present time has passed, one sees things with perfect vision. In a relationship, it is like being in a river, and you feel fine sometimes and it is fun and cool and wonderful. But other times you feel like you are drowning and you feel trapped and you just want out of it. But once you get out, after a while, suddenly you are able to see things so clearly again. And the river always looks beautiful from the shore, and soon you want to jump back in again.
I wonder if love really does grow old, or if people are just stupid.
I would not trade my time with Lily for anything. Some may think, or say, that it is a waste of a man's life to spend so much time loving one person when in the end, it does not end in marriage. And maybe I could understand that point of view. Maybe. If I had not lived it. If I had not loved her.
I cannot think of anything to compare it to, or else I would compare it to that thing. I am sure there is something, but I cannot think of it at this time. I wish there was only one love in everyone's life, and that one love lasted a lifetime or longer, and if that was how things were, then Lily would be my one love.
So this is, to the best of my remembrance, the story of us, of Lily and me. I have always wanted to write something. Something important. Something good to read. And really I think that you can only write what you know. And there is nothing that I know better than this story.
It is something that I lived from the time that I first saw her till the time I am writing this, although we have not loved that entire time. But one does not have to be swimming in the river to know how wonderful it feels, how wonderful it was, and that he would like to go back there again someday.
And although it may not signify much, this is the best I have ever written.