Recently, I've become close to a colleague at work. She is about fifteen years older than me, and has been divorced for about three years. For christmas, we agreed that we'd get each other a present this year.
I considered the usual stuff, but nothing felt "right." So instead I wanted to write the following letter. But there's two things I need to know:
(1) Would this make me look like a cheapskate; giving her a heartfelt, creative present as opposed to something more expensive?
(2) Considering we aren't going out with one another, but we are very close and very much in that "zone," is the letter coming on too strong?
Have a read and tell me what you think. I'm aware, for what it's worth, that some of it will not make sense to those of you who are not me or her.
Iíve spent hours sitting trying to think of what I could buy you for ChristmasÖ I could get you something for your car, maybe. Or some nice candles. A fourth (fifth?!) mobile phone. A DVD. Or maybe I could just go down the ďnormalĒ route of buying you some perfume, or perhaps some really nice chocolates.
But then I thought about it for a while, and I realized that nothing I could buy you Ė nothing in the world - could possibly say what you mean to me. So instead, in this letter, Iím gonna try and say exactly what you do mean to me. In words, straight from the heartÖ So please bear with me.
Truth be told, when I first met you, I never had the best first impression of you. Never had the best second or third impression either. Used to think you seemed stuck-up, or ignorant. And as a quiet boy who was still relatively shy and socially inexperienced at the time, I used to think that you were the kind of person who I could never, ever get on with Ė not in a million years.
Over the past four months Iíve realized that I was so very, very wrong. More wrong than Iíve ever been. And I couldnít be more thankful for that.
The truth is, you are one of the most kind and selfless people I have ever met. You are far from ignorant; you are caring and loving. You are independent, and you are strong of heart and mind. You are hilarious, and at times you probably donít even realize it.
If there is a definition of the perfect woman, you are probably not far from it.
You have the nicest smile, the nicest hair, the nicest eyes and the nicest body. You donít take life too seriously. You have fun and you are fun. You never seem to care about what other people think about you. You resonate this sense of complete and utter freedom in almost everything that you do.
And because of that, spending time with you is just a pleasure. When we talk, I want to talk to you for hours. And after we talk I want to think about you for hours. Even work is great when youíre around, and I actually look forward to being there when youíre there.
I love how passionate you are about your car. I love that you love good food. I love that you like to watch great movies. And I love that you give me little gifts, seemingly for no reason whatsoever. I love that you use your de-icer on my car, even when youíve hardly got any left for yourself. I love that you cared enough to want to help me find a television for my mother. And I love your little subtleties; like the little funny voices you do when youíre being silly, the little in-jokes we have between us, and really little things like the little ďxĒ you put on the end of every single txt message.
I guess what Iím trying to say is - in a very long and drawn-out kind of way Ė and despite how short a time Iíve known you Ė I guess what Iím trying to say is that I love you. And I love that I love you despite the fact that I never, ever thought that I would or could.
And I donít ask that you feel the same way, and I donít even ask that you be with me either. I certainly donít ask that you change when youíre around me. I just want you to know, if you didnít already know before.
I want you to know that youíre one of my favourite people on the entire planet. Probably my favourite person outside of my direct family. And I guess I hope that knowing that counts for far more than perfume, or chocolates, or any other expendable thing that I could have bought for you this Christmas.
I hope, most of all, that you have a brilliant Christmas, and that you have a fantastic new year. Because you really do deserve it.
A man named David Grayson once said of his life, ďlooking back, I have but one regret; that too often when I loved, I did not say so.Ē He also said that all we really need to survive is one person who truly loves us. Not for our looks, or for our money, but for who we really are, deep inside.
You have that person.