When Romeo saw Juliet. When Harry met Sally. When Carrie bumped into Mr. Big. When Lancelot sought Guinevere. When John Lennon admired Yoko’s art. When Minnie was created to be next to Mickey. When my dad laid eyes on my mom across a smoky bar in the 1980s.
Of the great love stories I know and admire, they all began because one element of the pair just knew. Regardless if they had actually met them or not, brushed up against their lips, touched their hand, or heard the sweet rhyme of their voice – they still had an inkling that inclined them to believe that this person, this stranger - was the person meant for them.
There were no doubts – and if any thoughts begged questions, they were quickly shot down by reassuring love. Something in them, something that no one can ever put into words or describe eloquently - made them realize that this was their person, their love, their partner, that missing element and need that had to be fulfilled to find romantic happiness.
Maybe this is the question coming from every solo-lady who ever walked the face of the Earth, while she was searching for self-love and that love – but, how do you know? (Refrain from singing the song from Enchanted, please).
And of course, me being me, it is the question that inadvertently came up in conversation last night.
My mother’s childhood best friend and her husband were over to visit and we all sat around the kitchen table, playing cards, drinking wine, and catching up about our respective lives. They asked about my adventures in the city, my magazine career that’s starting to boom, this blog that’s gaining recognition, and how I was faring becoming a Northerner. They were both incredibly supportive and complimentary, and even though they aren’t part of the North Carolina crew who do not understand why I’m still unwed - they of course wanted to know about my love life.
I briefly touched upon Mr. Possibility and followed up by saying: “But it just isn’t a priority right now – I’m incredibly more focused on other things. If it comes, then I will welcome it, but if it doesn’t, I’m really learning to be fine on my own.” They admired my independence and self-assurance, but then, the man of the couple said “But when it does come along – you know it will knock you off of your socks.”
I replied with, “Oh, I’m sure it will but…” as the Mrs. interrupted me to reaffirm, “It will. It will knock you off your socks. And you’ll be scared, but it will feel right. You will just know.” I paused, tucked my hair behind my ear, looked down to gain some strength, took a breath and a sip of wine – and said, “But how is it that you just know? What is it that you just know?”
They both grinned, he placed his hand on her knee, she patted his grasp, and he said: “Something just feels so right. Unlike anything you’ve ever felt before. You know you can’t lose it – but unlike with everyone else you’ve dated in the past – you know you won’t. You have the trust that they will just stay.”
I was dumbfounded.
So when we meet Mr or Mrs Right – the fear of vulnerability becomes obsolete? We will have the ability, the freedom, the opportunity to finally lay our guard to rest, dismantle the barricade protecting our most valuable asset - our heart – and allow this incomparable person into our most intimate parts? And we become convinced we’ve never had our heart swell in such a way, our insides be as gooey, or our mind so full of images of not what we hope tomorrow will be, but what we know will be our destiny?
That sounds too much like a fairytale and so little like reality. I mean, is this really how it works in the real world of love? Have I just been out of practice or have I cleverly avoided actually walking into this no-single-woman’s land of finding true, unconditional, completely intertwining loving, bliss?
Or as every engaged or happily married couple (and Michael Bublé, for the matter) will tell me – you just haven’t met him yet. Or if I have, I don’t realize it (though for the record, that contradicts the “you just know” sentiment). And when I do – all of my questioning will cease and all will be well in my soul.
I guess, maybe, they could be right - but before we just know about love, don’t we just know about other things?
In this journey to self-love and truly by supporting who I am without relying on the word or the encouragement of another person - I have found that there are many things that I do just know. I know what I want – both in my career and in love. I know I was meant to write this blog – both for my own sanity and for the sanity of others. I know I had to meet and fall for each and every Mr that’s been in and out of my life. I know that moving to New York City was a transition that was designed by the universe in divine alignment. I just know that my beautiful girlfriends who are there for me through the thick and the thin – give me a peace of mind and security that will always be needed in my life.
I also just know that in due time, I will meet that Mr. Right and he won’t just be a possibility, he won’t be unavailable, he won’t just based on fire or ideas, he won’t be a fling or just my buddy – he will be that someone who is just different.
But even more than knowing I will find my match - I know that in the meantime, I just know myself, and that’s the most important information anyone can ever discover.