“I’ve been dreaming of a true love’s kiss, and the prince I’m hoping comes with this…” La, da dum de da da dum da da. All little girls dream of the day that a handsome prince will come and sweep them off their feet, and the pair will ride off into the sunset together.
Reality check. This does not happen. Not in my experience at least. Even if a relationship starts as a happily ever, the after part is not always so happy. I’ve seen so many broken relationships, and even experienced a broken heart, that I can’t believe that happily ever after exists the way that many people think it does. That we have trained ourselves to believe that it does.
Hollywood has not helped at all. Almost all romantic movies start with love at first sight, or falling in love over the course of a few short days. Then comes the happily ever after. Take Enchanted for example. The movie starts with a girl who dreams of finding a prince and a prince who longs to find a maiden to complete his love song. Bam! They find each other (by singing) and decide to get married the next morning. Unfortunately, step-mommy does not like this plan (and good for her … although her motives are different than mine would have been, but that is beside the point). She sends pretty little princess to the real world (score two for the villian!). Giselle finds herself in New York City and end up being taken in by a handsome (of course) man and his daughter. She complicates his relationship, and then fixes it. The Prince comes to her rescue, but Giselle likes …. the man who has taken her in?! Whoa. Love Triangle. Naturally the evil stepmother intervenes (although her kingdom is no longer in jeopardy) and wants to kill Giselle still. NYC man is her true love. Big surprise. Prince is hurt. Stepmother tries to kill everyone, then dies. Giselle and NYC live happily ever after and Prince and NYC girlfriend go back to fairytale land and get married. Everyone wins. Yippie.
Obviously Enchanted is a very extreme, overblown example. But other movies have done it too! So many movies involve romance that sprouts from a brand new meeting: 27 Dresses, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, etc. This is not realistic. But so many people have bought into the idea that if they can do it in the movies, we can do it in real life. Falling in love may be easy, but how can you know that it’s real and lasting? Any time I’ve thought I have “fallen in love” it turns out to just be an infatuation that, thankfully, I get over. Sometimes quickly, but sometimes I just like the idea of liking someone. And maybe not even liking them, but liking the idea of the person I think they are.
Liking the idea of a guy for me is sometimes better than actually falling for someone. At least if he’s just an idea in my head I can’t be disappointed. Real guys disappoint. My friends keep telling me that when I meet the guy I’m going to marry I’m going to be really fun to watch, but I have become so cynical about ever finding that one person that don’t even want to look.
Guys, be warned. If you want to date me, you have your work cut out for you. You have to convince me that you are an awesome person, show me that you are being real, prove that you won’t just decide to give up, and earn my trust, all in addition to winning my heart. I don’t envy the guy who decides to take on this task.
I want to find love, not a fleeting romance. I want love like in The Notebook and p.s. i love you. Love that lasts, love that sticks around. Love that transcends all problems, even death. I think I know why those movies make me cry; it’s because the portrayal of love is so realistic, showing conflict, and how true love wins in the end. Love isn’t perfect, because people aren’t perfect. But we can try and fight for the love that we want.
So it’s not gonna be easy. It’s gonna be really hard. We’re gonna have to work at this every day, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, for ever, you and me, every day. Will you do something for me, please? Just picture your life for me? 30 years from now, 40 years from now? What’s it look like? If it’s with him, go. Go! I lost you once, I think I can do it again. If I thought that’s what you really wanted. But don’t you take the easy way out. –Noah Calhoun