Words soothe me.
They’ve taken me on trips to faraway places and given insight into other people’s inner thoughts.
More personally, when written, they’ve given me the courage to say the things that I didn’t know how to say verbally. That’s how my love for words and writing began; I learned at an early age that the written word instantly makes people stop and listen even if they don’t want to.
In many ways, they are my security blanket.
But for some people, namely my fiancé, words are just words especially “I love you.”
To him, it’s a phrase used too often and too early, which minimizes the meaning of those three little words. That is why he prefers to show me that he loves me rather than tell me.
And because I know that no letter or poem could ever fully express to him how I feel, I meet him halfway at a familiar place: food.
To me, it has always been an expression of love. My aunt taught me that early on as I watched her wearily make meals to feed seven to 30 people. I now realize that she cooked to feed our growing bodies and hearts.
So when my hands are covered in homemade shortbread cookie dough for the alfajores that he loves, it is my way of saying you are worth the trouble.
Changing my diet and what I cook is my way of saying I am trying to grow old with you and eating better will help us achieve that. It’s my way of saying I am happy that you are in my life. You presence changed me for the better and I am grateful.
Lucky for me, he is a man that believes actions speaks louder than words so when the aroma of spaghetti sauce or blackened salmon fill the air, he understands.
He knows that I am just penning another line in his love letter.