Dear Friend and their soon-to-be wife,
There are two ways to fall in love: as men or boys. Most of my time with Friend has been entrenched in the second, a forgetful gibberish of spoiling beers, sloven dancing, abrupt laughter, philosophical chats disguised as handwaving, handwaving disguised as philosophical chats, and a crew of rousing, intelligent boys most of all, boys who were disguised as men, boys who were disguised as anything but boys, boys who were disguised as us.
It is occasionally difficult to look back on those moments of yesteryears. Asking who one is by reflecting who one was is a pursuit reserved for sunny-dazed retirement or darkened-dazed therapy. But it is important. For in the balderdash and daily costumes we now wear, I learned who Friend was, who Friend is, and most of all, his love.
In those days that were professed to be the days that we would call the days, I told him love is farting around until the smell abates, and then sticking around for the next rip. Friend and I would toot and holler about it. How foolish, he would say. How behind.
He would instead tell me love is a being. He would quote some esoteric book. He would show me his writings. And he would say love is sometimes hard to explain. But it was his to decipher and bestow.
We jump around to talking about kids, about life, about life after us kids grew up. He was to be happy, this was the goal. He wasn’t sure how it would look. But it would be in the small everydays, in the coffee drunk, the peach dared to eat, the entire book finished, understood, and discussed. It was intellectual. It was dumb, with a laughter only sentences away. And it was his, he told me one day, to share.
On Saturday, finally, fully, he is doing that with you, soon-to-be wife. I have been fortunate to see his love evolve into nothing into something into everything for you, soon-to-be wife. I wouldn’t dare say he is a man yet, for I hope none of us have befallen that fate, but I do say this love you two share is what we must’ve imagined back when we would debate back then.
It is pure. It is total. It is concrete. Each time I see you two, I note how the decisions you make are together, for each other, with each other. You hold your lives in equal parts. There is no need to balance, but instead, it is balanced by you two.
In this way, I am still learning as a boy. Love is not farting around. Rather, it is being considerate for your partner, telling them what might occur from your behind, and preparing for the outcomes, however loud and messy and indiscrete.
I am so lucky to have known you both, and importantly, to learn love from you both.
I wish you both better than the best, for you already have it. You are the best things that have happened to one another, and look how much more is planned. You two, as Friend may have said in University, are love being loved and lovely and loving.
Until we meet as men who have devolved to boys again, love
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