I wasn't going to write this directly to you, but it seems like the only way to do it. Any other way would feel like I'm talking badly about you behind your back. But I'm not. I don't want you to think of it that way, so I'm going to say this directly to you. I want to own these words and I want to do so without guilt.
A few months back, I read a quote about how in the eyes of loved ones, even sinners becomes saints after they die. I'm not a fan of giving someone the label "sinner" or "saint" because I don't believe people can fall neatly into one category or the other, but that idea stuck with me. I wanted so badly to remember only the good things about you and about us that I made you into a saint in my mind.
You were an incredible man, but you weren't perfect. We had a real and special love, but it wasn't perfect either. Nothing in life is perfect. But in death, it can be remembered that way.
It's not that I rewrote history, I just filtered it in the best possible light. Ignoring some cracks and retouching some blemishes, I made the picture of us that I hung on the halls of my mind: perfect. A picture perfect love with the world's most picture perfect guy. Whether I was intentionally doing that or not, it didn't feel harmful. It just felt like I was honoring you.
But what I didn't realize was that I was setting myself up for a life filled with unfair comparisons. Atop the high pedestal I placed you on, you sparkled like an illusive dream. No other guy would ever be able to compare to the picture perfect image I had of you in my mind. You couldn't even compare to that image.
I didn't write all of this to put you down. From the very beginning I cautioned well-intentioned friends away from doing that. In my eyes, moving on will never come from making you less than you were to me or diminishing what we shared. What you were and what we had was beautiful- unedited, unfiltered. But what I must remember is that what it wasn't, was perfect.
Nothing in life is perfect, but in death it can be remembered that way.
So now, I want to take you down from your pedestal and see the image of us as we really were. I'll take the cracked-glass, blemished-faced picture of our love story and hang that in the halls of my mind. Because what was real may have been flawed, but it was something I'll always cherish. And putting it all in perspective will allow me to see the present not as a second-rate version of what could have been, but as an opportunity for another flawed, but perfectly imperfect love story.
I Love You Imperfectly,