Suburban Snapshots

I Will Eat The One Who
Breaks Her Heart

Friday, April 12, 2013

I don't believe in soulmates. Based on pure population data, the chances that my husband is "meant" for me seem slim. And lately I've been a little bristly over the unrelenting stream of "true love" graphics coursing through my Facebook feed. The friends who post them are usually single, somewhere in their twenties. The images have quotes like, "If she's jealous, she cares," or "A real relationship has no secrets." I don't mean to be cynical because I believe in lasting love, I do.

Eventually I want Anna to experience what it is to be on that particular drug that makes her feel impossibly light, the one that pulls from the chest towards a flawless joy. I want her to experience what it is to have someone out-of-their-mind crazy about her, who loves her just for showing up. And when it's time, I also want her to know that this will fade, and that the chaos of love isn't something that can be summed up into the space of a viral graphic, that romance changes shape — at first it looks like flowers and picnics, and later it tastes like shared leftovers on the couch.

I hope her love starts in her belly, that it's flecked with hard kisses and torturous separations. And I hope it lasts into arguments over left-out dishes and forgotten bills. I want that one day she'll see that love is being able to hurt and then reconcile, that romance is sacrificing the better side of the bed or the last slice of cake, and that these are more substantial than all those movie-scene rushes to airports or boom-box serenades.

She should know that at some point she'll choose to stop looking, not because there's no one left, but because she's decided to make a life with someone. And when the day comes that she realizes this wasn't fate but a conscious choice, that she's still sure of herself.

I hope she'll understand that years of love can mean days of needing space, that the separations become more mundane but that there's always happiness in the reunions.

I want her to feel all of these things, so she understands that we don't find "the one," but that we work and compromise and nurture to create them.

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