Have you ever wondered how you would write your own love story? Honestly. None of this "I'm going to bump into him walking down the street, his eyes will meet mine. And we'll be hooked ever since. He'll be handsome, disgustingly rich, and we'll live happily ever after." That's mumbo jumbo we know will most likely not happen.
It doesn't mean we don't wish love could be that easy, but as loving a parent, or a sibling might often tell you, love requires work, and an element of surprise.
Audrey used to tell me that she wondered about fate's role in this department. She had listed off to me everything from using a Ouija board, fortune cookies, dreams, even scribbling a name with your eyes closed on a piece of paper. "As a child, you play with cootie catchers, knowing and not knowing they're real", she said to me, "why would you treat love any differently?"
I won't deny I've done these things as a child. Hell, when I was little, I would play with the chain of my necklace, and gently let it fall onto my table and stare at the shape it made. I was so certain the shape it made was far from random. It had to be, it had to mean something. But throwing an eraser that on one said said "yes" and on the other said "no", seemed much less magical when it came to answering your future's question. Math class turned that into a game of statistics and probability.
You are one in six billion living souls. If the probability of life outside earth is so infinitismally small, chances are, finding someone who will think that you can't snap with your left hand endearing is as possible as you being able to stop time.
And yet people find love. How do they do that? I mean, sitting on a subway, walking down the street, people are holding hands everywhere! I'm not jealous, my fine reader, I promise you that. I'm just stating that it's there. Somewhere between busy schedules and self-journey, there is a binding glue that makes life worthwhile.
I've been told to love myself. To love platonically. The make best friends. To do good deeds. To love another species. Well, I've matured, made friends, joined clubs and have a cat. Now, what?
I'm not taking these things for granted, far from it. If anything, without these solid foundations I probably would have called it a day. Those things I mentioned above are love in its finest form, as of yet. Isn't that horrible? No matter what the human species achieves, it always wants more. Sufficiency is merely a word we decided to write in a dictionary in hopes that one day something we will find will be "just enough".
Here I am, happy as a clam, well, relatively anyhow, and yet my goals perpetually keep me looking forward, for something more. I'm not condemning the idea to dream, to want more. But in this case, I should be content with what I've got, no? In any other circumstance, had I not been raised on 80s family-oriented sitcoms and disney romances, I shouldn't be so infatuated with the idea that someone else could complete me, right?
Sometimes, I wonder if I'm just curious. And that, out of sheer curiosity I'd like to feel something I haven't felt before. I've never owned a car before, and I'd really like to drive. But somehow, when you compare love with driving, it appears as though I'm insulting the magnitude of joy with which love can provide me. But think of it this way: to a person who has experienced neither, both are outlandish and extraordinary. And for a moment, both can make you feel exhilirated. Both will make you work toward responsibility (hopefully), and eventually you will know what you're doing.
But there are car crashes, break downs, divorces, abusive relationships, etc. There are more than enough reasons to steer me in the direction opposite of finding out that which makes me so curious. Am I really just a kid who wants to stick their finger in an electrical socket?
I have absolutely no visual artistic abilities. I'm not kidding when I say I can't do a stick person justice. If I were to paint, I would have no idea how to express the excitement I'd like to feel mixed in with timidness on my subject's rosy cheek as she kissed her beau. Would she be kissing him in the portrait? Where would it be set? What would they be wearing?
You see, my fine reader, when I asked you if you had ever wondered how you would write your own love story, perhaps you did not understand to what extent I was asking that question. It wasn't merely "how will you meet your soulmate?" Because, in all honesty, I've tackled the feasibility whether you will find the be all end all of perfection (not that you should be looking for that, anyway). I'm asking you - would it have been the way you actually started? A nervous kiss during an 8th grade slow dance? Or would it be the first time you actually felt something in a relationship? Does love really start romantically? Can it start with a little girl and a grandmother? A boy and his pet?
I know, I know, it's the chicken and the egg analogy all over again. Fine, I'll simplify myself. What are the lessons you hope to learn from love? Will your love story find someone worth holding onto? Will it marry the wrong person, so long as you had experienced true love once?
Perhaps, to my advantage, I do not paint because I cannot paint. I do not have an eye for the intricacies in life. I do not know how to create the surprise with which life's adage "love comes to those who need it most and expect it least" so easily portrays.
In the back of my mind, I do wonder. Every day. Every face I meet I wonder about their love story. Maybe the boy I sit next to in class I will never see again, and it will mean nothing. Maybe ten years from now he'll publish a book and dedicate it to me, and I will have never known. Maybe next month I'll join a club and serendipitously fall in love with one of my colleagues.
I do not know how it will happen. But, the very least I can tell you, my patient reader, is that I would like there to be sincerity. With each and every step I want there to be an understanding that it was never done in vain. That honesty is not something you just read about, and that people can genuinely care. To feel protected, that you don't have to be alone.
I don't know how I fit into this puzzle of ours. My piece could be next to yours.
My piece, whose contours I've traced in my mind a hundred times, will hopefully teach me that a piece is as only good as the person you make the puzzle with.
Puzzle within a puzzle. Double-image. Stranger than Fiction.
Creative. Writing, Piece.
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