My dad would always warn me to be careful when falling in love;
I fall too quickly for my own good.
So on the days leading up to the moment you arrived,
I made sure I steadied my footing,
readying myself for the moment I would.
I could tell I was going to.
I wanted to be prepared.
But as I stood in that airport, my knees were already trembling.
It seemed as though the moment I saw you coming down that escalator,
I lost my footing.
All of a sudden everything around me had disappeared.
All at once, I was falling.
I wondered if skydiving rivaled that thrill, and the fear.
My heart never stopped pounding.
When we got back to the car,
I kept staring at you as though you'd vanish.
My mouth grew dry with dread.
I worried I would wake any moment and all of this would have been nothing but a dream.
But I didn't, and you remained.
We stepped into my room and everything blurred.
I heard nothing but the air rushing by me as I fell harder each moment.
I turned to you, begging for clarity, and was met with a kiss.
For a moment, I could see again.
I warned you I was petrified.
You held me.
I saw the pieces of me I had lost when falling in the past come hurtling towards me as I fell.
When I woke up to you, your chestnut irises were still closed,
yet your breathing stabilized my rugged heart rate.
I was completely unaware of where the ground was,
or how hard I'd hit it,
but I savored the sight as though it were still all just a dream.
Each and every moment with you,
I feared the outcome.
I prepared myself with every aching hour for the impact.
My breathing was so unsteady, I felt on the verge of collapsing.
I closed my eyes. I couldn't let myself see what was coming.
As we sat on my bed, and you held me in your arms,
you begged me to open up.
You insisted I open my eyes,
and I fought tears as our breathing synchronized.
I could see the ground now.
The panic clawed its way out of my heart, up my throat,
and I felt my body shake as the words finally spilled out.
I braced myself.
I winced, expecting the pain.
I had anticipated every bit of me to shatter.
I was ready for there to be nothing left of me to break.
But I didn't break.
I could tell the world around me was still again,
but I wasn't on the ground.
I was not broken.
I was pieced back together, carefully.
You kissed me, breathing into me the life I thought I'd given up.
I finally opened my eyes, and as my vision focused,
there sat every piece of me I thought I had thrown away for each and every heartbreak before.
The parts of me that I had lost so long ago, that I assumed nobody would miss or remember,
sat upright, polished, and presented like precious gems.
The feeling in my body returned,
and I turned to those perfect orbs in disbelief--
you caught me.
You never let me go.
It was then that I realized that all the while I had readied myself to fall,
I had already spent my life preparing my heart for you.
So when my dad reminds me to be careful this time, I'll let him know:
I was, but I never needed to be.
You were right here all along,
waiting to catch me.
oh my ******* ***, i love you.
a month from right now i'll be in your arms again.