She was the innocent child thrown out to the wolves and learnt to crave his knife to lead the pack instead. Adventure was her snowflake that beckoned her to come out and play. Through the looking glass at the end of the tunnel she stood; taking her breath away was the last thing on his mind. She was never his or her own. She belonged to something far too unknown. She detested recycled stories of boy-meets-girl. Yet, she got entangled in his dream catcher and all she could do was stare. Weak men ran away from her cause they lacked the strength to fix the broken. He was a fixer and knew exactly how many and where the stitches go!
Is there ever a point in our lives where we should give up on love? Where we should throw in the towel and just be content with not finding another person to let into our hearts? I don’t think so. I don’t think that we should ever look at life and think that love will never find us. But this is all coming from a hopeless romantic. Hopeless mostly. And being a hopeless romantic in the modern age has taught me a lot of lessons all about love.
1. Prince Charming might ride the bus instead of a white horse.
Does what we drive or what we wear or what we do really matter at the end of the day? Why do we set impossible high standards on what we’re looking for in another person so that it makes it so that when we do find someone, they have to meet a criteria list that literally not many people can? When you find someone who makes you happy, the details really are just the details.
2. Sometimes the person you love doesn’t magically realize they love you too.
Sometimes we fall for people who don’t feel the same way. Does that mean that in some way we’ve failed either physically or personality wise? No. Not at all. I have found that sometimes falling for the wrong person can teach us what we want from the right person.
3. You have to kiss a lot of frogs.
Or maybe you didn’t have too and are just lucky. Sometimes though, it takes a long time till you find the one person you want to settle down and have a house full of puppies with. Just because it’s taking a long time to find the one though doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with you. It just means that they’re taking their sweet ass time to get to you.
4. Nothing good comes without struggle.
Even when you meet the right person, that doesn’t mean you ride off into the sunset and that’s it. You just get to live your life with your love without any sort of issues. Nope. No way. Whoever said love isn’t work is extremely stupid. Love is another full time job on top of your already full time job. Even though it’s work, it’s the most fulfilling job in the world if you find the right partner to do it with.
5. Sparks fade but laughs don’t.
You know that fuzzy feeling in your tummy you get when that new person you’re into texts you? Yeah that fades. It just has too. It deepens into something more than just butterflies. So if you’re the type of person who lives for sparks, I’m sorry to tell you that it’s not real. Find someone you can be incredibly silly with. Find the person who you stay up all night with laughing. That’s the person you should want to end up with. Not the one with instant sparks.
6. Never settle.
My last and probably the most important point. Never settle. For anything or anyone. Resentment isn’t something you want to feel later on in life. You want to look at the person you’ve ended up with and see what you saw in them the first time you met. Fall in love with the person for everything that they are and everything they add to your life. Never let someone make you feel like you can’t do better because if that person is not making you feel your absolute best, I promise you can find better.
Your happily ever after might not have a sunset or royalty but it will match whatever reality you’ve created. From one hopeless romantic to another, falling in love isn’t always sunshine and rainbows but it is worth diving into. No matter what happens at the end of the day, love will always be the best feeling.
Something borrowed from the hopelessly romantic soul – Alexandria Brown
I love you. And not a day goes by that I don’t tell you.
But the silent poetry that throbs in my chest cannot be uttered in three little words—or 3,000 for that matter. Whenever I try to describe the way I feel for you, every word seems trite and hollow; the whole English language insufficient.
Maybe if I write it, raw and uncut. If I pour myself out, and breathe passion fire into these words and make them live, they might come into your heart and dance. Maybe when you read this it will take you there—to where the wild drums are beating, where pain and bliss both run together, where lovers die into each other, and are born again…
I want you to
know this feel this.
When I say “I love you,” what I really mean is that I want you. From the very first time you ran your fingers through my hair, I have longed for you—for your touch, your embrace, your taste on my lips.
You turn me on. It’s undeniable. It’s chemical. It’s electric.
When I say “I love you,” I really mean that you’re beautiful. You’re gorgeous in your heels and gowns and all your glittering finery, and even more so in your pajamas and blue jeans. When you’re not even trying, when you let go and just be carelessly, naturally you, it takes my breath away—like a sunset reflected in still water, or a starry night so clear you can see the Milky Way poured out across the sky.
When I say “I love you,” I mean that I love your form, your body, your arc and elegance. I love the curve of your neck, your breasts, your back and your hips. You embody pure woman from the curls in your hair down to your ankles and toes. Like no one else can, you awaken the man in me, the beast in me, the passion and hunger and lust.
I love how you move, your effortless grace. I love how you walk, your rhythm and sway. I love how you dance. I love how we fuck—how we breathe and thrust and grind as one. One pulse, one pleasure, one ecstatic culmination; a prayer, a holy communion.
When I say “I love you,” I mean all of you, just as you are. I love your silliness and your playfulness, how easily we can laugh at ourselves and at life. I love your courage, your strength. I love your jealousy and insecurity. I love your (sometimes painful) honesty. I love how you really walk your talk and take responsibility for your own “stuff.” I love your willingness to face your fears and grow.
I love who you are, deep down—the timeless innocence I see in your eyes. Underneath everything you say and do I see a pure and selfless intent, a kind and compassionate soul.
When I say “I love you,” I mean I trust you. I respect you. I admire you. I adore you.
When I say “I love you,” I mean that I’m sorry. I’m sorry for every time I take you for granted. I’m sorry for every time I’m too busy, too distant, too self-absorbed to make time for you. I’m sorry for every time I fall short of being the man you deserve.
When I say “I love you,” I mean that I love this dance of loving each other. I love how it constantly calls me to go deeper, to walk my talk, to own my shit, to face my fears and grow. I love sharing life with you—the triumphs and the failures, the laughter and the painful silence.
When I say “I love you,” I mean my life is better with you in it. I’m a better man because of you. And the more I come to know you, the more I want to know. I miss you when you’re not around. I’m grateful for every moment we’re together.
When I say “I love you,” I mean I want to be the one you turn to when you’re hurting. I want to be the one who listens. I want to hold you in my arms. I want to take care of you. I want to give you something to stand on in this crazy, constantly changing world.
I want to make a home and a family with you. I want you to be my partner, my lover, my Radhe—the yin to my yang. I want to wake up next to you in the morning. I want you beside me when I close my eyes at night. In a universe of infinite possibilities, on a planet of seven billion human beings, I want you.
Baby, the next time I grab you as you’re passing by, put my arms around your waist and pull you close, kiss your sweet lips, look deep into your eyes and say “I love you,” this is what I really mean:
Here I am—body and soul, sinner and saint, warrior and fool, all of my love and all of my baggage—all of me. Here I am, with open arms.
I see you—mother, daughter, sister, lover, the light and the darkness, the goddess and the scared little girl—all of you. I want you, all of you, you and only you, just as you are.
I have a place here in my heart for you.
Something so beautiful can sometimes only be said when you have some words as “something borrowed”.
There’s a reason why my walls are built so high, and there’s a reason it will take you longer than expected to bring them down. There’s a reason why I’m guarded.
I’m guarded because I’ve been hurt before. We all have. My weakness is that I carry the pain with me as a constant reminder that it could happen again. And while this is such a cautious way to walk through life, while instead I could be wildly sprinting, the wild sprint has made me fall and trip before, and the scrapes and burns were painful. So painful that it takes a while to try and run that fast again. So I walk, and I walk carefully noticing my surroundings because I worry if I were to ever fall that hard again, I might not be able to get back up.
I’m guarded because I’m scared of what you’ll think, but not scared enough to admit it. I fear your disapproval like a little girl fears the monster under her bed, and right now I will just keep quiet to avoid any disturbance. I’m guarded because no one has ever protected me as well as I protect myself. My own armor has been stronger than yours, or his, or hers, and it will continue to be until someone shows me otherwise.
I’m guarded because I’m no stranger to failure, and while it has made me stronger, it has also made me more aware of how all of it can go wrong. I’m guarded because I’ve mistakenly invested my trust in those who took it for granted, and because of their disregard, I no longer hand out trust so easily.
I’m guarded because I see the damage coming before it even happens, and I know that the lucky ones will tell me how unreasonable, pessimistic, and sad this all sounds, but even when you try to tell yourself that this time is different, the reminder seeps back in. Life will bring hurt and pain, and people will disappoint you, but no one has the ability to break down your walls except for you. I’m guarded because I’ve chosen to be that way.
I think when you’re young, you’re hoping that this person will be the right one, the one you’re going to be in love with forever, but sometimes you want that so much you create something that really isn’t there. But I didn’t understand then. That I could hurt somebody so badly he would never recover. That a person can, just by living, damage another human being beyond repair.
That is the way it is with a wound. The wound begins to close in on itself, to protect what is hurting so much. And once it is closed, you no longer see what is underneath, what started the pain. I have learned now that while those who speak about one’s miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.
Life presents us with a lot of hard choices.
What clothing to put on in the morning. Black coffee or with milk. Who to spend the rest of our lives with, and what to do if we want completely different things out of it than they do.
There are pre-designed answers to these questions, of course. High-waisted jeans. Milk is less fattening. Pick the person you want to be with, because love conquers all. We have a specific set of rules we ought to follow as we plough through the tough questions in lives and they all come with pre-determined outcomes.
The outcome of choosing the right pants is getting complimented by the trendy girl in your office. Picking milk means you won’t feel as bloated. Picking the person you love over the life that you want means your sense of self-worth will slowly degrade and deteriorate over years of contentedly slipping into bed beside someone you’re comfortable with.
I want to make it clear that I’m not bashing marriage. Or relationships. Or romance of any kind. I love love. I love it too much. I lose my mind and my heart and my footing over love much more often than I’d like to admit and that’s the only reason I know anything about this in the first place. Love is wonderful and worthwhile and enriching but it should never be a standoff between the person and the life that you want.
Love shouldn’t have to be the biggest compromise of your life. I know that you’ve been told otherwise. You’ve watched movies, read novels, heard adages from relatives and friends who perhaps have very successful relationships – love is constant compromise. You can’t have it all. And perhaps they are right. You can’t have it all. But you should be able to have what matters.
You should be able to be with somebody you love and also live a life that entices, invigorates and inspires you. You should be able to pursue what you want out of this world in every fearless way you want to without running the risk of losing the person you value most. You should be able to have, at the bare minimum, a relationship that allows for growth and exploration on the part of both parties.
What you have when you have a relationship that forces you to whittle or water yourself down is a mismatch of values. You may have found someone you love. Even someone you want to spend your life with. But if the only time you see eye-to-eye is when you’re staring into each other’s, you’re signing yourself up for a lifetime of hard choices.
You can make it work with someone who wants different things than you. It’s been done countless times. If one wants a steady 9-5 and the other wants to endlessly roam the globe, you can find an in-between. One can settle down or the other can speed up or you can find a satiated in-between where both of you are halfway to happy. But is this the life either of you really want? Is this the life you’ll be happy with when you look back at it? Will you be glad that you compromised and put aside your desires for another person?
If the answer is yes, then you’re set. Some compromises are worth it. But if the answer is no, then I encourage you to move on. To cut the cord. To do the hard thing that none of us want to do, and to go pursue the life that you wish you were living.
Here’s the stark truth about the person who is right for you: They want the same lifestyle that you do. How do I know this? Because that is, by definition, what makes them right for you. To be with someone whose eyes light up when yours do, whose heart races when your blood also pounds, who is enticed and inspired by the same forces that drive you forward, is a gift many of us never truly get to experience.
Because we settle. We settle for the person we love over the person who could push us – to be bigger, stronger, greater versions of ourselves. We tell ourselves that love is enough. That it conquers everything. But we forget that love shouldn’t be the thing that conquers our lives – we should be. And we should do it deliberately, triumphantly, by the side of somebody who shares all of our joys and successes.
So how do we meet such a person? That’s simple – we do more of what we love. We give ourselves up to uncertainty, to searching, to pursuing what we want out of life without the certainty of having someone beside us while we do it. We throw ourselves wholeheartedly into the things that we love and we consequently attract the people who love what we love. Who value what we prioritize. Who appreciate all that we are. We throw ourselves into the heart of possibility instead of staying comfortably settled inside of certainty. Because we owe it to ourselves to do so. We owe it to ourselves to live the greatest life that we’re capable of living, even if that means that we have to be alone for a very long time.
At the end of the day, love is wonderful but it isn’t enough to make up for an entire lifetime of compromising your core values. You don’t want to spend forever gazing into somebody’s eyes expecting to find all of the answers you need inside of them. Wait for the person who is gazing outward in the same direction as you are.
It’s going to make all of the difference in the world.
There’s a picture on my phone of us, hidden among all of the discarded pictures, selfies and screenshots of quotes and saying that make my chest heave a sigh. There is a little sparkle in your eye that makes my heart melt into a puddle of dissolved cynicism and pessimism.
Each time we had sex you would push me in a way I didn’t know I could be pushed. I loved every second of it. I would drink up every part of you and scream into your shoulders – even those muscles did nothing to silence the sounds you brought out of me. I’ve always been loud but you took it to an entirely different level. But more than the sex I was addicted to talking to you until the sun started to come up. You once said that coming over to my place took planning because you knew that what with anyone else would be a 20 minute thing would last for 5 hours between you and me. I think I fell for you a little bit each time we’d start arguing before either one of us had gotten a chance to put our clothes back on.
We were never an anything. Never had a label, never had a definition. The most I was able to stake claim in was stolen glances that I invented meanings for and the three feet of book piles in between us. I created somethings out of “hey you” text messages that came my way at 3 AM, pretended like I was the only person you were breathing into on Tuesday nights, grasped for some sort of sign out of the way you would kiss the back of my neck after you peeled my shirt off.
You asked me to not bullshit you and said you would never lie to me. I’m not sure if I have a right to be upset, because is not saying anything, the same as telling a lie? You never made me feel bad about being honest until it got a little too real and then you went off into the world without even telling me you were going. I was honest with you and now I’m going back to only being honest with my keyboard.
Each day that goes by where I don’t text you is like a little victory. I mark it on a calendar and collect imaginary chips for days I haven’t had you in my life. I’ve always been one of those people who was all or nothing and with you I was unapologetically all in. But I was playing alone and now I’m working on recollecting the pieces of myself I never should have expended and my dignity that I watched slip away when I cared about you in a way you never cared about me. Each day that goes by where I fight through to urge to admit “I miss you” is seen as a win in my book.
But regardless of me swallowing down the want and the need to try and force you into my life I can’t bear to delete that picture of you. You hadn’t gotten rid of your facial hair, had that ridiculously adorable look on your face that brought out your sparkle, and I liked to pretend that you told all of your buddies, “That’s the girl who gave me the scar on my arm from holding onto it.” Every now and then when I’m a half bottle of rum and coke deep and wishing that your legs were touching mine I scroll through and find it and remember how much I really liked having you in my life.
You were important to me. You changed me. You made me remember what it was like to be excited to see someone and what it was like to miss somebody. You made an impression on my heart that I still can’t quite define and I’m not sure if it’s ever going to go away.
So for now, the picture of you is going to suffice. The memories of you laughing and making fun of you are what I’m going to hold onto instead of grasping for someone who isn’t there. I’m getting to the point where thinking about you doesn’t make me want to throw myself into a place of desperation. I’m almost to the place where I want to talk to you again and knowing that you won’t kiss me after we yell at each other about work doesn’t make me feel abandoned.
But I’m not totally there. So for now, I’m not ready to see you. I’m only ready to think about you once a day and remember that until I’m ready to try and bring you back into my life in even the smallest of possible ways I have your picture and nothing to apologize for.