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[personal profile] serpentsky
I wrote this a few weeks ago, but it still pertains. Possibly to remind MYSELF to stop making things so fucking hard, as well, I'm posting it here.

I've realized I am sick of hearing people say how hard relationships are. There are only two reasons they're ever hard:

- you're with the wrong person
- you're using the past [wrong people] as a yardstick to judge how hard a relationship should be. [If the past relationships were right, or how they should be, you'd still be in them!]

In other words, we're doing it to ourselves. I truly believe this. I've talked to a few people over the past few days about the nature of relationships, and an astute friend's two words made it all click in my head: "romantic comedies." I spent a good part of my wait for a band interview on Saturday night talking to a friend about that, because she's the sort of friend who points me in the direction of the truths I seek; my reality check, in many ways.

So let's think about the romantic comedy for a bit, keeping in mind just how much of an impact pop culture has on our society at large. The romantic comedy is formulaic – they all pretty much are based off the same basic premise.

Boy and girl meet -> boy and girl fall in love -> something happens to tear them apart [jealousy, deceit, ghosts from the past, misunderstandings, meddling friends, lack of communication, etc.] -> something happens to bring them back together after a chance happening. This chance happening usually occurs when the female is leaving a grocery store in an unexpected place, with a brown paper bag, a French loaf sticking out of the right side, some fresh carrots with their green leaves sticking out of the left. She may or may not drop the bag, but they have an awkward moment, possibly some harsh words, then kiss and walk off into the sunset together, ostensibly [or visibly] to spend the rest of their lives together.

And here’s the thing: that’s not how it goes. It’s just not. But we’ve grown up considering that the norm; we practically expect – and wait – for the drama to pop up. And when it doesn’t, we – most likely inadvertently – create the drama for ourselves because in our subconscious, it doesn’t feel like love/potential love/a proper relationship to us if it’s actually easy.

Why are we torturing ourselves so?

I propose that when two people gel near-perfectly, it’s not a cause for concern or alarm, it’s cause for celebration. Those two people are the lucky ones… they’ve managed to overcome the wrong person, the past, the right person [maybe], wrong time… they’ve just landed in each other’s laps and should be grateful that the benevolent forces in the world aligned just so, in order for that to happen.

Instead, though, fear ends up ruling the minds of the parties. They start actively looking for flaws and excuses and reasons to not take the plunge. In a way, it’s hard to blame them. After all, it’s scary to put yourself on the line like that. It’s taking a risk, and who likes to do that? The words, “I could get my heart broken” run through your mind like an illuminated screen in Times Square, because the past shows you, and swears to you, that’s what happens when you fall.

But you know what? It doesn’t always happen. Think of the couples who make the news, celebrating 60th anniversaries. Your grandparents, and their enduring love. They took the risk and found everything they wanted – and didn’t get their hearts broken, for once. For always. Their hearts remain intact and they have a partner, a companion, a support system, and someone who loves them. It’s rare, but beautiful.

I, personally, am willing to take the risk, if I think it’s worth it. Perhaps my slight masochistic streak makes this easier for me than for others, but I refuse to let myself become nothing but a mass of scars that I wear all too proudly, using them to shield me from ever moving forward. I refuse to take all my baggage – stamped, well-worn, and tattered – and carry it through life, building walls, bag by bag, that nobody can see around. I’ve done this before, and I know this much: it’s against everything I believe in… particularly personal growth and discovering new things. I will not sleep with ghosts.

I think we’ve all become far too comfortable with the idea that it’s okay to wear our scars and our damage on our sleeves. Not that I think we should be ashamed of, or hide, our pasts. They’re part of who we are – they helped shape us into the people we are now. They taught us lessons, they showed us what we don’t want, as well as what we want. Good and bad, we ideally grasped new ideas about ourselves and our place in the world. Where we belong and how we relate.

…But we can’t use them as a crutch, or as a defense mechanism. Love, like anything worth having, requires some risk. You might get hurt. You might not. You won’t know, either way, if you don’t give it a chance.

It’s easy to just walk away, to go back to old ways. To hide your feelings behind stone walls that people may or may not see through; to try and trick them with things like sex or random conversation or simple avoidance. Stop dwelling on the past! It’s the past for a reason, or myriad reasons. But you’re not being true with yourself when you do that, you’re hurting someone else, but even more so, you’re also hurting yourself.
We need to start thinking about life like this: it’s not a romantic comedy… it’s an adventure. It’s opportunities. It’s learning. It’s taking massive risks, knowing that one day, something will happen that makes you sit back and think, “I can’t believe it… it was worth the risk.”

And if it wasn’t? Well, add that to the life experience column. You’ll still learn, you’ll still walk away with a better understanding of yourself and your place in this world, especially in relation to others.

As such, I say, just breathe. Remember life isn’t a romantic comedy. And be glad that it isn’t, because you know as well as I do… those movies usually suck.

Date: 2008-05-27 05:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] http://users.livejournal.com/-melt-/
Your comments on Darkrose's Lj led me here, I'm so glad for that. If anything on the inside of this journal is as inspirational as this post I would really appreciate being added as a friend, Thank you.

-T-

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serpentsky

April 2008

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