“A dream is a wish your heart makes” – Cinderella
I love, love. A hopeless romantic. The person that cries at the happy parts of the movies and not the sad. Finding joy in discovering that perfect gift that is all sentimental and not superficial. Searching for that face that makes you smile when you a walk in a room. Believe it or not that is me in a nutshell. But lately I have been struggling with my belief in love and looking for that break in the clouds.
My mother always says, “Jacky, life isn’t a Doris Day movie.” I get it, I am a smart girl. The pages out of a great Disney story don’t magically happen. That all the great love song lyrics or movie scripts are just some persons vivid imagination. Yet, I struggle to accept this as a truth.
My argument goes something like this. How could someone create these prose without first experiencing the feelings in real life. There has to be inspiration from day to day life, or at least your mystical muse? Let’s take a stab at fairy tales. The story starts off with a dream, then there is thrill and excitement, obstacles, pain and hardship ALWAYS come along the path, and ultimately joy is discovered. Show me where that doesn’t happen in real life?
As I struggle to find that place of peace there are a few givens I have learned to accept about love; perfection, availability, and respect.
I remember the moment I realized that nothing is perfect. I was actually sitting in a movie theater watching the flick “Kate and Leopold” and in the end Meg Ryan’s character must decide to travel back in time to be with her love, or stay in the present with her family and friends. She had to give something up on her check list of true love. Nothing is perfect and it is the imperfections that you are willing to live with that makes the decision to stay in a relationship.
Love isn’t a choice, it isn’t learned, can’t be earned, or even wished for upon a star. The feeling is just there, a big ole multi-dimensional monster that either fills you will warmth or wrecks every ounce of temperature from your being. Needing time and tending just like the tomatoes in your garden and if ignored it will wilt. If you are not available to love, it will have no home to nest in your heart. We all grow up checking off boxes of accomplishments, finish school, get married, have kids, buy a home, get a great job, fly to France, you get my point, but does anyone ever teach us that love needs a box on our daily list of “to-dos”. I can safely say I have managed to navigate through two marriages and the common loss on both is that we did not work on the love. Everything else came first.
Here I am 52 years old and I have to say, love has kicked my butt. So many times I can’t even count. But I can’t help with every part of me that screams pack it in, go get a cat and settle with the loss, I believe and I yearn for that feeling. What is my number one common flaw in these loosing battles, my lack of respect for myself. “Why wasn’t I enough”, I am the champion of holding all the blame and fighting to be heard. What the heck is wrong with me? Sometimes I think it is my competitive nature or the fear of failing. Don’t get me wrong, I am a true believer that it takes two to tangle and neither side is right or wrong. But in my gut, why do I continue to hurt, hold all to the end of the earths, for someone that doesn’t love me? Well that is all on me and my respect for myself.
Funny how it takes half of your life, maybe having cancer, who knows, to see that there are bigger things in life and not to get wrapped up in the rights the wrongs. And guess what when you wake up in the morning the pain isn’t going to bring you tea. Judgement is not going to run Saturday morning errands with you. The righteousness of being correct isn’t going to hold your hand as you walk on the beach or sit around binge watching Netflix. Past is the past and I haven’t found a single soul that has ever been able to go back and change their course of action. All we have is the future, the journey ahead, one step at a time.
Today is my youngest 21st birthday. She is a darling girl who I hope finds all the love and light that any young person her age should experience. Miss Lilly, here is my advice to you, respect yourself and your boundaries, be available to the process and the feelings, no one and nothing is perfect, and by all means if he shows up with a shoe that fits, wear it!