She's all I think about. Whether I'm driving my kids to school or intubating a patient in cardiac arrest, she's right there with me.
She's the last thing I'm aware of before I sleep, and the first thing in my mind when I wake.
If I go a day without her, I feel awful. Miserable. Forgotten my mother's birthday miserable. So I try not to let a day pass when I don't give to her at least a little bit of me.
And she repays me like nothing I've experienced before. She gives me confidence like Ali and speed like Sugar Shane (ok, I wish she gave me speed like Sugar Shane, but a boy can dream can't he?). She tempers and humbles me, humiliates and rebuilds me.
She makes me hurt. Oh my God, she makes me hurt. But I beg for more, insatiable like Mardi Gras gluttony.
I buy things for her. Little gifts here and there, sacrifices to the greater cause of our relationship. She uses my gifts to hurt me more, and it only makes me want to repeat the cycle, again and again and again.
She controls me, even without making demands. She puts me to bed early, forces me to abide to a one beer a week rule, and laughs at me when I remember ever smoking a cigarette. Yet I've learned to accept her rules, knowing that we will be stronger by avoiding the habits of my former I.
And her wishes and desires and needs have become my wishes and desires and needs, so that we are symbiotic in this creation.
And as one, for better or for worse, richer or poorer, in sickness or in health, we will face all obstacles thrown at us on June 24, and on September 9, and on any future days when we might happen to find 17 hours to swim, bike, and run our way over 140.6 miles.
My girl... My girl...