Let’s face it. I’ve always been a helpless romantic.
Ever since I had read “Pride and Prejudice”, I was hooked on the idea of being involved in something greater than myself: a partnership. It didn’t have to be marriage, in fact, all throughout high school and my early years in college, I swore marriage was absolutely out of the question. I didn’t need a man to take care of me. But I craved that someone. That someone I could share my life with.
He called me his co-pilot.
And I think that’s when I dove head first into a committed relationship. I think that’s when I started to force myself to grow up and make adult decisions. He offered what I was so desperately seeking.
Then years passed. Naivety vanished. And reality set in.
Four years later, I no longer had a partner or security. I didn’t have the affection I craved. I could have fallen into depression – if I haven’t already. I don’t think I have. Though that’s a question for those who see me daily, who are probably treading lighter around me. I could have given up. I could have closed up and put up walls. But I didn’t, and that was because I have the best role models: my parents. My father most of all.
Last night as I laid in bed, I was feeling down on myself.
I didn’t feel like writing (I had just received my first rejection). I didn’t feel like playing with my dog and cat, although they whined for my attention. And I didn’t feel like responding to any of my friends, although they took the time to text me. What was the point? I wondered.
And that’s when I heard them.
I knew what the downstairs looked like, without having to be down there. My father was sitting in his chair, on his tablet reading something that only he’d find interesting. My mother was sitting on the couch reading a book only she’d find interesting. The television was on (too loud, I have to add that should they read this). But I was able to hear my father get up. And he had to pass my mother on the couch on his way up to the bedroom.
I’m not sure what was said first, though I know they were talking about how good my father smelled, as he can hold the clean scent of cologne on him all throughout the day. She was laughing. My father teased her slightly and then he laughed too. But it was his laugh that had me sitting up in bed.
This laugh, as my father rarely does so in front of his children, was completely and inexplicably free. He’s entirely too composed around us, though we would never fault him for that. So when I heard it, it was completely foreign to my ears. In this simple chuckle, I heard the devotion, the adoration, the amusement, and the innate love he had for my mother. He cherished her. Despite the complications of life, he wanted her.
And that was my epiphany. He was never mine. And I was never his.
Because a man who wants me will laugh at me just as my father laughed at my mom. He’ll find me amusing and sexy at the same time. He’ll take pictures of me because he’ll find me entirely too beautiful, even in my rattiest clothes.
I always had hope. The romantic in me didn’t die. But my father assured me that men loved. Not just hopelessly, but ridiculously.
Thanks for reading! -Dani