Sunday, June 29, 2014
What is love?
The Fault In Our Stars OST
I have a serious hangover from this book, movie, and soundtrack.
It's been a while since I decided to read the book because I couldn't wait for the week to pass by fast enough until AR got his salary so we could watch the movie. Well, technically, he and Matt watched How To Train Your Dragon 2 while I watched The Fault In Our Stars on my own.
I love this book and the movie and the soundtrack in its simplicity. In its honesty.
You'd think a book about teenagers with cancer, terminal cancer at that, would be sad and depressing or try to be profound and intellectual. Not that it wasn't. Of course it was sad and you fell in love with Augustus Waters from the book to the actor Ansel Elgort (such a cutie).
But the portrayal of how teens, especially Hazel Grace, deal with death, love, cancer, life... all these big questions... there was just something very simple and practical and honest about it.
Truth be told, I found Hazel Grace's character a bit too overdramatic at times, a bit stoic and cold at times, but I guess that's what makes her great as a character. You don't have to like her. She doesn't have to be your best friend. But she does make a lot of sense. And she's smart too. Plus she is the girl Augustus Waters fell in love with. (Lucky girl.)
All these thoughts about the big questions in life, love, death, even just knowing you're going to die... it got me thinking about life, the universe, and everything (Still wondering what kind of food they serve at the restaurant at the end of the universe... Haven't read Hitchhiker's Guide yet. I really should.).
I'm 36. Sometimes, that doesn't sink in or maybe I like to pretend I'm actually younger than that. 'Coz I don't feel old at all.
And I've been married for 12 years this year...
And I wonder... Once, as a young writer, around 24 I guess, I was newly-married and the person I was interviewing asked if I was married and for how long. And I said I'd just gotten married or something. And the person I was interviewing made an off-hand comment about how it's only romantic at the beginning. And that all that lovey-dovey romance doesn't last. At 24, very much still in love, I bristled at the comment and wanted to say, "No! We will be lovey-dovey forever!"
And the reality is, no, we're not.
I mean I think AR and I still feel the same way, sort of, relatively. But just as the first bite of chocolate cake you've been craving for is sweet and yummy and a bite of heaven, the following bites no longer have that same "oh wow, I've been waiting for this forever" taste. Know what I mean?
It's like the Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, and Before Midnight series starring Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy. I hated Before Midnight. But I can't quite relate to Before Sunrise anymore... So I guess we're at the "Before Sunset" part in our life together. Getting to know each other again... like strangers coming together after a long time apart. But with a shared history.
There's no longer the tedious telling of every single thing about our lives. We know that already. But I guess love also means you have to make an effort to still get to know the person. Sometimes, you look over and realize that the other person has new interests, new dreams, new things they want to pursue.
And you just hope and pray that their dreams come true.
What saddens me, even with my interest in all things young adult (books, movies), is that why is love only appreciated when it has such a short shelf life? Why does someone have to be dying or really old before they realize what love is? Especially for them to go to extremes to cherish and celebrate it?
Why does love have to be as amazing as the love you feel for the first time? Why can't it last? Why are people so cynical, especially older people?
Recently, I also had a conversation with someone around 10 or so years older than me. And I asked him what he felt for his wife. And he said about the same thing. That the love is still there, he'd made his life together with his wife, but the romance is gone.
This fascination with all things young adult and people dying in love stories in order to have epic love stories has got to stop.
Yes, it reminds us of what first love is like. But then what?
We let the romance die. We cheat on our spouses. We have affairs. We talk to complete strangers hoping that they inspire some form of love, lust, or whatever.
We're all looking to come alive again.
And, frankly, I'm sick of it.
It's time to craft a new love story, don't you think?
One that reminds older people not to disillusion young, romantic brides. One that stands the test of time.
Been hanging out at Twitter too and all these young people are stating, "Forever is a joke. It doesn't exist."
Why have people gotten so cynical about love? Is love really just meant for books and movies?
I hope to God not.
Whoever you are, wherever you are, I seriously hope you find your happy ever after. And I hope you get those "boom clap" feelings in your heart every time you look at your loved one.
Because you deserve that. Everyone deserves that.
And, for God's sake, if you love her, don't cheat on her.
Love exists. It's up to us to keep it alive.
And, you know what? When you do get disillusioned about love? Look up.
God's love is the only perfect love. When you get tired of trying to still believe in every love song, in every love story, and find yourself jaded and cynical, look up. Put Him first. And everything will follow.
Think of every love song as a song to Him instead of your crush, your spouse, your ideal. And you discover that His love will flow back into you.
And then, like that line I love in "Eat, Pray, Love", maybe, like Elizabeth Gilbert, you'll also find out that you can love the whole world.
And the world will be a better place for it.