Short Stories From 10 Years Ago – June 26, 2004
A Remarkable Love
Short Stories From 10 Years Ago – June 26, 2004 – I worked today from nine until two and then had the rest of the day to myself. My sister-in-law Dorothy and I had tentative plans to see a movie if time permitted in both our schedules. It’s been ages since I’ve been to see a new film and I was really looking forward to an afternoon lost in movie magic.
Out first choice was Troy, but it has left the local theatres. Stepford Wives and The Notebook were our options, based solely on time and location. We settled on The Notebook.
It’s the story of the innocence, fragility, sweetness, longing, angst and pain of the first love of two teenagers. Needless to say, one of them is from the wrong side of the tracks. The end of summer and meddling parents take a their tole on their relationship. They go their separate ways.
One leaves for college, the other remains in small town America. The story is woven through the past and future with two sets of fine actors playing the main characters. Seven years go by and one of the characters meets a new love, while the other has a series of loveless trysts – unable to commit to another.
Finally fate intervenes. I’m into my fifth hanky by this time – Dorothy is dry eyed. The two meet once again and the story continues. I sat watching this lovely, tender film and it made me think about the loves of my life. I have loved and I have been loved – deeply at times, but I have never experienced the kind of love that was depicted in this film.
My parents loved each other – my father more completely than my mother. I thought about Charlie during the course of this film because parts of it reminded me of his experiences with my mother. I will not have this kind of love in my life – one that spans a lifetime. I haven’t loved anyone in a very long time, but I hope that I will again before my time on earth is over.
These days I see a lot of couples engaging in very convenient, superficial love. It’s not often that I meet a couple where it’s evident that they are deeply and passionately in love with one another. Bitching, complaining, snide comments, outright insults and a lack of mutual respect are so common. If this is the side of the relationship they show to the public, I often wonder why they’re together.
Perhaps they stay because of children, convenience, financial security, habit or laziness. I always come away from an encounter with such people feeling sad and depleted. Perhaps there was a time when they loved one another – but those feelings seem to have faded long ago.
If you are truly in love with someone, tell them every day. Hold hands, smile, remember to share little secrets, take time to be together, respect your mutual confidences, have a weekly date, champion each other’s dreams, don’t be afraid to reveal your deepest thoughts, honour the other’s fears, believe that they will always have your best interests at heart and you theirs, allow for their weaknesses and applaud their strengths, be open to the changes that will inevitably happen in each other’s lives, fight fairly and forgive sincerely, have faith in the bond that exists between you, don’t let the romance in your relationship fade, nurture the trust that exists between you and never jeopardize that alliance – if it’s broken – it’s the hardest bridge to rebuild. Be soft and sweet with each other. Every time you see your partner, your heart should beat just a little bit faster.
Real love isn’t crude, conditional, callous or cruel. If you truly love someone, take that feeling, wrap it in silk and tuck it away deeply inside your heart so nothing can ever harm it. Nurture it at every opportunity. Be kind, flexible, calm, genuine and true with it. Never allow an outside influence to alter its course. I don’t think many people are fortunate enough to love profoundly and absolutely, but that’s what I’m holding out for – now if I could just get a date for coffee. Oh, and by the way, go and see this movie!