My beloved Tacoma, 

I see you. 
I bear witness to your resiliency, tenacity, and compassion. 
I hear your pain.
Your outrage. 
Sections of you isolated. 
Perpetually neglected.
I won’t look away. 

Things are harder than they have ever been right now.
Arguments seek to weaken us.
We are being pitted against one another often.
Listening is hard when yelling.
The poisonous need to be right fractures and divides us. 
We both want to be heard and seen.
Usually at the expense of becoming blind to one another. 
I feed into this more and more. 
Some days all I know to do is push back. 
Disengaging seems easier.
Less stressful and painful.
Then I think…

Apathy will not be the demise of our relationship. 
I cherish the rough edges, less polished, and unrefined parts of you. 
The breadths of your boundaries reflect the complexities within. 
The folds in the shadows hide the pieces sunlight rarely touches. 
It is easier to look away than to face head on. 
Admitting I do not know how to care for your entirety is deflating. 
No matter how hard I fight, or loudly I yell, or break down
Progress feels incremental, or even going in reverse. 

I want to do more and be more for you. 
Sometimes I tire of the fight.
My willingness wears thin. 
I wonder, “Why bother?”

But then I catch a glimpse of your beauty through a conversation. 
A shared experience. 
An old connection. 
I notice a part of you I’ve never met.
Reminded of your evolution.
You make me smile. 
And laugh.
I am humbled and in awe of what you can accomplish when nurtured with love. 
You expand my ability to love. 
Increase my dedication.
Capacity to stick it out. 

Tacoma, we are in an evolving relationship.
One that expands in maturity, admiration.
Ebbs and flows.
I choose to recommit to our relationship daily. 
It’s imperfect.
Lacks humility.
At times, feels intolerable.
The truth is, I don’t want to be anywhere else.
I cannot imagine deepening my history’s roots anywhere else. 
For all the times I rail against parts of you, I choose to stay. 
I choose to give you my all. 

Tacoma, you are a part of me. As I am a part of you.