I was not endowed by my Creator with the inalienable rights of life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and a beautiful mistress to love and cherish me.
My Beautiful Mistress:
Last night we were talking before we went to bed, and you asked me when I knew I wanted to be with you forever.
I said I wasn’t sure; you asked why not. I said there were several things involved: I’d been hurt and I was gunshy; I wanted to be smarter than Mr. Stupidhead and not rush into something blindly; that I wasn’t sure if I was good relationship material; a few other things. I can be mighty slow on the uptake but I finally figured out that yes, I DO want to be with you and belong to you forever and ever.
You asked me if I ever felt that I wasn’t good enough for you or if I thought I didn’t deserve to be happy. I used to feel that way about five thousand percent, but thanks to you I’m learning to grow out of that. But I do feel that way sometimes still.
I went to sleep feeling smug. I, I thought to myself, am An Enlightened Male! I am too enlightened to take My Beautiful Mistress for granted! You won’t catch THIS Enlightened Male forgetting Valentine’s Day or your birthday! S‑M-R‑T SMRT, that’s me!
But I’ve been thinking about it all day today and I realized I was wrong: I DO take you for granted. And I should.
There’s a little game we play that I love: I say, “I love you!” and you say, “I love you too!” and I say, “I love you MORE!” and you say “Why?”
Then, depending on my mood, I might tell you something silly: “Because I’m taller” or “Because you’re a lot more beautifuller than me!” If we’re out somewhere together I often say, “Because I’m with the most beautiful and awesome woman here and every other guy here wishes they were with you instead of me!”
But you know what the real answer is: Because you chose me. You could have anyone you wanted, but you chose ME.
I try not to be a grammar Nazi, but doggone it, “granted” means “to bestow,” “to accord as a favor,” “to give,” “to confer.” I know when people say “taken for granted” it usually means “Duh. I deserve it; it’s mine.”
But you are not just some thing I deserve. I was not endowed by my Creator with the inalienable rights of life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and a beautiful mistress to love and cherish me. I didn’t buy you; I didn’t earn you; I didn’t win you in a contest. I didn’t hunt you down and catch you; you’re not some trophy I shot, stuffed and mounted on the wall. You’re a GIFT.
You patiently and kindly coaxed me out of my fear, and one day I gave you my heart. I often say you captured it, and you did, but you captured it by opening your hand and gently, oh so gently, waiting for me to realize I could trust you.
And I did, and I do. I was scared; I was afraid of being laughed at; I was afraid you would suddenly wake up and say “What do I want with THIS loser?”
But you didn’t. Instead, you gave me YOUR heart.
No, wait — you just reminded me that you’d already given me your heart and helped me stop being afraid to take it.
I have never thought “Well, of course; I gave you mine, you give me yours. It’s only fair.”
No, no, a million time no. For me, it’s more like I gave you a crumpled, torn, stained old piece of paper and you treated it as if it was a winning lottery ticket. Not just A winning ticket — THE winning ticket. I gave you nothing and you gave me everything.
And I take it for granted. Because “granted” means “gifted.” I will never forget it. I couldn’t if I tried.
You could have had anyone, anyone at all. But you chose me. Me!
And because you did, the worthless, dirty, damaged, used-up old thing I gave you is blossoming. It’s becoming new and beautiful. It’s alive again.
And all that happened because you chose me. I belong to you; I trust you. I love you. I always will.