Something Borrowed

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There were a few male leads that came after my first. We could say he was iconic, till I outgrew the mysticism of a first love, of course. In fact, until I meet my true love I will probably have a vacant throne lying in wait. But first I must acknowledge that there have been others since, good guys who taught me many new things about love and helped me discover myself anew each time. Some I never got to be in lasting relationships with and few, well, tried to stay.

All of the lessons learnt being a hopeless romantic are in vaults hidden deep within me, in places I only visit when there’s a chance love could be calling for me. Each time I fall from the comforts of my uncomplicated life and into the mad typhoon called love, I borrow from that vault, imprint the sentiment into the now and then toss back into the vaults for safekeeping.

Married hopefuls, hoping for forever after with their co-conspirators have vaults just like the one hidden in my innermost. They are not exempt from the let downs, the changes and the re-directions but most notably, they too borrow from the vaults within when they need to.

And when what is needed is not met by what is within and the love is so real it must be redeemed, help can be summoned from whence love comes.

This is my understanding of marriage, that it is something that is not of this ethereal world. That it matters and requires superpowers to outlive our misguided expectations and fairy tale ideas of love and bond.

As I see it, God made man when he had made all else, when he’d seemingly emptied Himself and was new again. Then with a heart full of love He made a mate for man and bound the two so irrevocably that it literally pains to undo the bind. And when we ache from the parting we rightly call it heartbreak, borrowing from the visual of a helpmate being sculptured from the rib of her betrothed so she could forever keep watch of his heart and his heart could bear her very being over and over.

Marriage thus is what is made new (despite and because of), what was old, so that when the newness is lost it can be invoked from the source of Love.

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Something Old

elderly-black-couple-16x9It wasn’t long after I became intimate with my first love that the scales began to fall off my eyes and the magic dulled. There I was, a bare cape cod wriggling about, longing for the safe waters I’d just leapt out of for my man. Boy did that cocky confidence I had had in my indestructible feelings for my boyfriend come tumbling down.

Suddenly, things that had never been a factor began to matter. I began to mule over things that bore no circumstance to my life up till then, began to ask questions that were unwarranted because, let’s be honest, the bad had happened in my childhood but not in isolation of the good. I asked myself what if I couldn’t measure up and he left to fight for someone else instead? What if I’d one day wake up to find I was no longer new, to him or even myself? Those questions were steeped in experiences straight out the book of my own life but blown out of proportion because of my vulnerabilities of the time and their familiarity.

In the typical love story, the male lead wakes up ten years after his romantic wedding to find that the woman he was so keen to marry once is fat, stressed, wrought and probably hates or disrespects him. Or both. Then a flirty, single, independent woman who has trouble bagging her own future unhappy husband, suddenly drops into his life and ignites that ravishing inferno that was quenched on his wedding night. Yes, I suppose the symbolism and narrative is quite brutal but the reality is just that for many in long term committed relationships. Once the magician shares or shows all his tricks, he becomes a mere mortal once more and inspires no weird displays of affection.

When we become fragile and face situations that feel slightly familiar, the temptation to become what we once were or what once was, grows exponentially. What was new becomes old because of what is old in the new.

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed.

(Before we get to it…)
I’m finding a whole lot of my past writing lately to my sincerest amusement and endearment. Much of it reminds me how I’ve really missed writing and that even with other keen interests, hobbies and talents, my love for writing is impassioned and deep-seated.

Marriage was not always a factor to me. For the largest part of my life as a young woman, I reveled in my own independence and imagined a life and future filled with many adventures, amongst which marriage was not included.

Kids were a different matter since my mother was raising her children as a single and accomplished woman (this was before her marriage to the love of her life, my dad Vusi) at the time. And then I met my first grown up love at age 21 and suddenly marriage looked a lot more attractive than ever before.

So, although I never dated this piece and can’t be sure when exactly I wrote it, I suspect it was only after 2003.

Hey…the writing style is not as fresh as some of what I’ve done recently so I let the “OCD” kick in and take over and attempted to tweak it here and there, without drifting too far from the original work. It’s long too (mea culpa) so please feel free to throw your tablet on your lap, hug a bag of chips and be comfortable ;-). I will publish it in three parts, starting with “Something New”.

As always…thank you for reading!

P.S. Disclaimer: No people with real OCD were harmed during the reproduction of this piece ❤

Something New

african wedding1I was a fairy tale novice when I met the first man to ever make my heart flutter senselessly. That year I spent the first New Year’s Eve ever with him and our friends instead of with my family. A late bloomer to everything relating to mature adult relations, l relied completely on this boy to map out the blueprint of our affair. I even let him determine the pace and gladly gave in to his ideas of what was to be done to elevate our relationship to another level. Starting the year in his arms and not embracing my mother and sisters was one such example.

It’s hard to describe the overwhelming euphoria this love created within me. Passion surged uncontrollably, even without cause to believe that something more, something permanent would come out of our growing little love affair.

To a great extent I equate marriage to these feelings I had for my first love. All two people have is an unreasonable confidence, unwarranted faith that the love they are cementing permanently with vows, a dress and tux, cake and a license is going to last forever. Something new, something like a first love or a walk down the isle, always inspires mad courage and faith in the impossible.

Sent from my iPad