Monday, 25 February 2013
Love like in the Movies.
Love like in the Movies.
For in this life and on this tiny planet, there is just one special person for each of us..
To adore and be adored by, to hold and be held by and to love truly and be loved in return by this same unique somebody. Or so the movies would have us believe. On the surface don't we recoil at this idea as somewhat sloppy, infantile and exclusive, such that it could never be or become a reality ? A type of idealising that can only lead to frustrations and heart ache, a love that can be easily shattered with a tiny flaw of irregularity at any given moment ? Then why does the emotion within, move us when we see these film characters giving in to this genuine hope that love could be so intensely dramatic. And why do so many of us subscribe to all of the romance that can lead us to this destiny, this serendipitous moment with one special almost god given divine creature ? Is it not a product of fantasy alone, to believe that this one person is not only looking for us, but that we will recognise them the instant they arrive before our eyes ?
Of course many of us dream this could be true, and yet somehow we tire of waiting and become convinced that reality is just not like this and that the real love that we need to sustain us, is the kind that grows over long periods of time. And that with hard work we shall attain a level of happiness suitable to live with which is far more appropriate than the love that it would appear could move mountains. Some of us come close to understanding another human being well enough to consider a life in their company, even if we are not driven to passion by that arrangement, rather than live alone. Or worse, to be judged by others as a failure at love if we don't have someone in our beds at night.
Is this not the truth for many of us ? Possibly even a majority of people who choose someone, anyone, rather than be lonely or continually single. Yes I feel you nodding, I too am one who has chosen this stalemate rather than emptiness of a house a life or a bed. I don't make assumptions nor judge anyone despite the questions I raise here, none more so than myself. I simply want to raise the discussion about how and even more importantly why we let go of our dreams, and settle for the ordinary, long before the chances have gone.
Questions raise thoughts and thoughts require a time to be dissected, absorbed and reviewed, and then we have an obligation to ourselves to find answers to the doubts or responses we hear ourselves giving. The human capacity for internal dialogue is a wonderful thing, yet it can eventually drive us to the point of choice over the fear of continuing with the debate. Some will say any choice is better than none. No choice is not an option because it leads to regrets and recriminations of our ability to follow our hearts and destinies. Others say that fate has not left room for our choice so it doesn't actually matter at all in the grand scheme of things. But I would guess, no wager, that the majority of us, at least for some part of our lives have entertained the notions that we were supposed to follow some kind of signals, signs and or omens that would lead us to be where we would meet our perfect match.
I believe myself to be a sensible man, a man who can make decisions and stick to the aims of those choices, regardless of the inner voices that might accuse me of hasty or irrational decision making. But somehow, despite many years of life and experience I have never been able to shake the intense feeling that destiny lies in my own hands and within the choices I am to make. And worse, when ever I see any of these special movies that are about romantic timing and fate or destiny, I go all mushy and tearful and still believe that there is a hope for me. Don't misunderstand me I have loved. I have been, in love. I have been moved by a person that I thought I would never be able to live without. And those relationships have not ended because the object of my desire died or was cruelly taken away by some other weird twist of 'fate.' Nope, just plain old regular falling out of love, or a mutual agreement to end the intimate part of the relationships. I had hoped and believed in great depth that some of those relationships would have lasted for all time. Sadly I was wrong. So it makes it even harder now to recognise, just what is that magic that needs to flow for me to see love as being true and indefinite. Truth is, no-one really ever knows how that would feel, until that magical moment when it is happening to them. The creators of cinema have been able many times to describe the various types of scenarios in which fate takes over and love blossoms, yet even the best of the bunch can't quite say in actual words and with definitive truth, just how we as people will know the difference in our own distinct case. But my thanks go out to those directors that have done such an amazing job of showing us, just how it happens, and revealing in essence the power of the attractions that let us believe that it will one day happen to and for us.
I have just re-watched an old classic, 'Sleepless in Seattle.' I haven't seen it for many years and I cried a lot. Honestly I had no idea just what a great movie that was, and how beautifully it describes the desires of not only the boy who had lost his dear mother to Cancer, but those of the father coping with the loss for both of them, and how they go about dealing with life after her death. And on the other side it shows just how the woman was living in a contrived reality to believe that true love existed, whilst all the time knowing it was not quite right. It is a beautiful and moving film, with just enough drama to inspire anyone to understand that patience will reward the faithful and the virtuous. But then there are many films that touch on this theme as it is the most common denominator in any film ever produced. Even war films and shoot em up movies have love included somewhere. Some of my all time favourites are films such as 'Love Actually', 'Brigadoon', 'The Highlander', 'The Holiday', 'The Time Travellers Wife', 'City of Angels', 'The Dead Poets Society', 'First Knight', 'Camelot', 'You've Got Mail', 'Forever Young', 'Cast Away', 'Forest Gump', and finally the BIGGIE, 'Serendipity'. Incidentally Meg Ryan a fine actress and Tom Hanks an incredible actor, who star side by side in the Sleepless in Seattle film also star in many of the others in my list. Neither are what could classically be described as stunning looking actors, yet something almost ordinary about them gives power to the film as they show just how the ordinary nature of people can become anything but ordinary, as they determine to reach out for the dream rather than an otherwise ordinary life with make-do. The magic happens right there on the screen before us and we weep for the reason that cannot be contained any more. We see true love finding a way to reunite those destined to be together.
Are we going to believe this can happen to us ? Will we yet give in to mediocrity ? You know I am not talking about this attraction that is being spread ferociously these days, which is all about physical beauty. We are constantly being bombarded with images of what the perfect image is and fascinate over becoming this body perfect person. But that is not what I am talking about here. I am talking about the chemistry that reaches beyond the boundaries of form or stature alone and sees the person beneath. With films such as 'Sleepless', we know that ordinary people can find the amazing out there waiting for us, in another person who is with us for who we are and not what we have or how beautiful we are in appearance.
Do not think that I don't realise that to be in love, compromises have to be made too for the benefit of everyone. It is true that some adjustments need to be made from both parties to accommodate one another. But if we do it begrudgingly are we then sure that this is creating a context for a productive relationship ? We should not need to compromise ourselves out of resentment, we should do it because it is the best thing to do to honour love. We should do it because love, and not fear drive us to be this way. Love is the law.
I hope that this post helps you as it has helped me in writing it, to be reminded that love is not lost. We have only to wake up to its existence and walk about with our eyes open so that when it comes our way we will be ready to receive it. It may well be where you are already and with whom you chose to spend your life. I am not advocating that you separate to go fulfil the dream. But maybe you should rethink what moves you and determine to act in a more productive way. Happiness is a state of mind, not determined by external factors.
Will you be my Annie ? My Heather, my Maggie, my Guinevere or my Sarah ?
Can I yet prove to be your Sam, your Connor, your Seth, your Lancelot or your Jonathan ?
Will our belief stay true and never waver till we meet, finally at the top of the Empire state building, until I perish, until I fall, until I save you, or until I find that book and you discover that five Dollar bill ?
Yes of course life cannot stop and it goes on regardless of the dreams we hold or the plans we make in our youth. I just hope that we can stay happy in the knowledge that we didn't settle for something less than what was right for us. Because regret is a nasty sword and it can impale us if we get too close.
Free is he or she that can say honestly, “I have never surrendered to hopelessness in the face of great odds.”
Life is somewhat short, so live it as if everyday was your last, and fill it with acts of love and sharing. And then that true love we were talking of, will find us watching for it in readiness to live the time of our lives.
Please send me your comments and let me know which films have moved you and tell us all why that film in particular has done the job on you.
May the love of the universe fill us all with love and light in the act of being true.