About a month ago, I saw the amazing Ed Sheeran in concert at Barclays Center.  Ginger Jesus made me cry, but over a song I totally did not expect. Once he started strumming “Photograph,” I hid my face behind my hair because I was uncontrollably sobbing. I couldn’t figure out what the fuck was going on and how I sprung a leak from my eyes so fast, but now I think I’ve figured it out. Here’s a breakdown of the lyrics that floored me most.

♫Loving can hurt, loving can hurt sometimes

True for any couple out there. Whether it’s mental, emotional, physical or verbal, there’s going to be some hurt somewhere. And I’ll admit, my boyfriend and I have our fair share of fights. We go at it like an old married couple, but always make-up. We know that it hurts, and there will be hurt in the future, but we’re willing to keep going until we’ll get it right.

♫We keep this love in a photograph/We made these memories for ourselves/Where our eyes are never closing/Hearts are never broken/And time’s forever frozen still

Speaking of Tom, my amazing boyfriend is going to dedicate his life to our crumbling country. Joining the Navy as soon as he possibly can, all the memories we’ve made in nearly two years up until the moment he leaves will exist primarily in memory and in photographs. Some people have told me I’m annoying for photographing absolutely everything, but knowing that there will be a time in which he isn’t a drive but maybe timezones away, I’m happy I was that person who documented everything.

♫You won’t ever be alone, wait for me to come home

When Tom’s away, it’s going to be hard. For starters, his tours will be at the very least six months at a time. That’s half a year of things that he won’t be able to physically be there for: birthdays, anniversaries, maybe even a Jets Superbowl (who knows when that will happen though). The point is, I’ll wait. I’d wait for him for forever if I had to. I waited nineteen years to meet a guy like Tom, and I’ll be damned if I couldn’t wait nineteen more to be with him.

♫Loving can heal, loving can mend your soul/And it’s the only thing that I know, know
I swear it will get easier,/Remember that with every piece of you/and it’s the only thing we take with us when we die

Where there is hurt, there is love. Through all of the fighting, I know there won’t ever be a day in which Tom and I can’t resolve our differences. We’re made for each other. I mean, my hockey team beat his way back in 2004 for God’s sake. We are meant to be, and you can say I’m naive, but he’s my soulmate. He’s the only person I want to be with. (And if you’re reading this Tom, I promise it will be easier.)

When I’m away, I will remember how you kissed me

When Tom’s away, I’ll have to remember everything. How he smiles, how he laughs, how he twitches in his sleep. But one thing I promise I would never, ever forget is how he kisses me. He kisses me like he’s never been hurt before, like he knows that I’m the one he’ll be with forever. And man, I hope that’s true.


I’m sitting here writing this, tears in my eyes. We’ve seen dark days, and we’ll see them again in the future. But we’ve also seen the brightest of days, ones where even the pitch black darkness feels like the sun is beaming on us.


You’re my forever and always. I’ll wait forever if I have to. I love you, kind of always have and definitely always will.


Carbie Courtney, over & out

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