My Grandmother and Grandfather were in love. Not the fairy tale kinda of love. More, the kinda love that those fairy tales were based on, yet never seemed to fully get. Sure, these tales portrayed something beautiful, almost surreal but they never were able to show what I saw. And, “what is it I saw?” you asked with baited breath. “True love.” I answer without a moments hesitation.
And this may be why I am such a terrible participant in relationships. To be honest, I have a self-destructive tenancy in relationships. Whether things are going good or bad, I find a way to destroy it. To make it something that either results in me being unbearable. or a provocative situation where my partner has to respond in a way that allows me a way out. Yes, it is a hard trait to endure (for them especially), but I feel like I am beginning to see why. I have met people that have stolen my heart with awesome and personality, and quite frankly, that is my ‘taste’: awesome and personality. I am not saying that looks do not play a part, only that “awesome and personality” hold final vote.
And I wonder tonight (because as i write this, tonight it is), whether my grandparents are not the influencing factor. And to understand this I need to convey what I saw with words. That is a tough enough task in itself.
My grandparents shared something that I have not seen again. Not in real life that is. I have seen it in the imaginings of romantic movie writers. Where a story is told , and seems improbable, yet is attractively real. They shared a destination that we all fantasize about. They shared an ideal. They met when my gran was sixteen. On the back of a truck while at a party where the men were dressed as women, and the women as men. And they fell in love.
Yet that initial spark never disappeared. I remember, at the age of thirteen, while my gran was making part of breakfast (my grandfather always made the bulk), seeing my grandfather walk into the kitchen. And he moved up behind my grandmother, who was standing at the stove, hugged her and wished her good morning. And I remember seeing my grandmother melt. It was like seeing those suave cats from the 40’s charm a woman loved. It was a practical display of courtship,only fifty years after the courting began.
I remember thinking to myself that I would never settle for anything less than that. It may have been a bold promise to make, but I was thirteen at the time and I had no experience yet. But, I made the promise never the less. And I cannot help but partly attribute some of my previous relationship’s short existence, to that promise. Even though, initially, I may have truly believed that I had that connection my grandparents had, I eventually realised I didn’t. So I would sabotage the relationship with what ever clever means I could think of. And I was devious enough to create issues that I could blame on my partner. So that I never ended a relationship without justification,
Tonight, it occurred to me that the kind of love my grandparents shared, was a love that developed rather than was intrinsic. It was a love that deepened with time, And it was a scary realisation to have, because all of a sudden I was no longer left with an excuse to push people away.
Yet I stand by my promise. I will not settle until I know, and if that leaves me alone, fine. I would rather be alone than lie to myself. But I will try in the hopes that that love finds me. To granny Val and grampa George; Thank you. You will always be missed and even more so, loved.