something I want to send to someone but I'm not ready
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In a small town in Western Pennsylvania there sits a stout maple tree. Its Scarred and battered from years of trying to survive. Its story began long before mine, yet I feel we have lead parallel lives. Like this tree, a seed was dropped and I was left to fend for myself. Learning how to be what I was meant to be with no direction or protection. Despite the scars and twisted past, we both survived, even flourished. Six promotions and five moves later, I found myself living in this quaint town. After losing the same 25 pounds countless times, I finally found my groove. I am a runner now and forever. One fall day, I was running and this tree dropped a gift directly in my hand. It was a perfect leaf that fell into my palm as I was mid-stride. I couldn’t help but think about all the events that had to pass for this moment to occur. Countless times we almost didn’t make it but battled back to survive. Heartache, pain, relentless attacks from the outside world and yet here we are, twisted, hard, but alive.
As profound as this moment was in my life, it pales in comparison to the second time a leaf landed in my hand. I imagine this will be the last.
In a crowded random bar in a chaotic city of millions, all I wanted was one empty barstool to have a few pints and dinner after a long day of travel. This proved harder than I thought. I waited, beer in hand for people to move on. One person pushed away from the bar, I quickly made my move. To my left was an old man staring at nothing. To my right was a woman I had yet to muster the confidence to look at. Once I did I was blinded. Blinded by energy and beauty. There were several people in our corner. We started a group conversation but within minutes, there was only us. Lost in our own world. We talked for hours. I never ate that night; we just laughed, drank and finally kissed. We continued to talk every day since that fateful night. I feel like I know her just like I know that tree. She is reluctant to talk about her past; she has scars, she has thick bark to protect her. She doesn’t want to let me in but for some reason, she can’t help it. Her heart is as sweet as that maples sap. Her gift to me was letting me in, letting me see her real self. It’s as perfect as that leaf. I won’t ever hurt that leaf, crush it like others may have. I know it will take time for her realize that. I am beyond patient; I know this meeting was meant to be. Only time will tell what will happen next. She is smart, beautiful, talented and will surpass my accomplishments in a short amount of time. She will always be a gift, she will always be my leaf.