…is Love, sweet Love.
All you need is Love.
Love makes the world go round.
Love is a many splendored thing.
I need Love.
I need your Love.
What about Love?
Catch my drift or shall I go on?
I used to be a hopeless romantic. In my younger, less cynical days I believed every one of those Love cliches. I mean surely every singer/songwriter to ever exist couldn’t be wrong, right? So, I bobbed along through 5 years of elementary school, 4 years of middle school, 4 years of high school and 4 years of college waiting. Waiting for my turn to have It. That mysterious life-altering, world-changing, mind-blowing thing that all of the singers sing about. I read the books. I was about seven when I discovered them. Those glorious novels about It. It began with the Sweet Valley books. Then it became Sunset Island by Cherie Bennett. There were the Lifeguards books by Todd Strasser. I was in seventh grade when I discovered Malibu Summer by Jane Claypool Miner. That may have been the one that truly broke me. I bought it one morning at a middle school book fair. I read it all day… between classes, at lunch, on the bus… It was 358 pages, and I finished it around seven that evening. I didn’t want it to end. I immediately regretted reading it so fast. I wanted to go back and discover it all again… Sixteen year old Amber Wood and her amazing summer as an au pair for a family with a beach house and not one, but two devastatingly handsome sons. I was jealous. I wanted to be Amber. I wanted the job, the summer, the sons. I know that there are 358 pages, without looking, because I’ve read it that many times. Looking back, I blame those books, specifically THAT book, for ruining my life.
That may sound melodramatic, but is it really any more melodramatic than all those songs that tell us about the importance of finding Love? My life, since Malibu Summer, has been spent desperately seeking that thing that Amber had. Now, at age 30, I’m coming to the crushing realization that Amber is, shockingly, not real. Her perfect summer love story never actually happened. The Sweet Valley twins exist only in the mind of Francine Pascal. Is there even a place called Sunset Island? My world is crashing down around me. I’ve always thought that eventually I would find that heart-stopping Love, but what if it never actually existed? What if it was a cruel joke played by authors and songwriters. Who else is in on it? The screenplay writers of chick flicks and rom-coms, obviously. Kevin Williamson, creator of Dawson’s Creek? Yep, he definitely got the memo. Is it possible that the entire world has gotten together to make this whole Love thing up, just to mess with me? I wouldn’t think that would be possible, but I don’t know how else to explain the fact that they all seem to be able to get married to normal, mortal men (and women) and be perfectly happy. I’ve never met anyone in real life that even holds a candle to the tanned hunks, the dimpled boys next door, and the denim-ed bad boys with a heart of gold that fill the nooks and crannies of my brain.
(Completely unhelpful) things my friends and family tell me:
You’re too picky.
You need to quit looking for Mr. Right and marry a man.
Give him a chance.
Looks aren’t everything.
You have to love yourself before you can love someone else.
You need to be happy on your own.
You’ll find Love when you least expect it.
All in God’s timing.
You just haven’t met the right guy yet,
God has someone for you, don’t worry.
Just be patient.
And my favorite… The guys on TV aren’t real!
So which is it? Is Love all I need or am I supposed to be happy on my own?
Is the reason that everyone else seems to be able to find their other half because they didn’t read romance novels at age seven? Am I ruined for life? Will anyone in real life ever live up to the fictional guys? And WHY, if the fictional guys on TV and in books and movies aren’t real, is it that all of the writers are able to form the same imaginary vision of them? How do they all share the same vision of what their amazing male leads should be like if none of them have ever met a guy like this in real life??
So, what’s a girl to do?
Settle for some guy who’s okay?
Focus on me and give up on finding this epic Love?
And how can I focus on mundane things like jobs and hobbies, when I am 30 and alone?
If you’re a fictional perfect guy come to life and you come across this page, please let me know ASAP!