Uninnocence

What does romance mean to you? If you’re a girl, is it large bouquets of fresh, exotic flowers? Or messages written in the sky for you? Are you floored by huge rocks bought to adorn your fingers, your ears or your neck? Or is it a room filled with lit candles which melts you? Those can all be undeniably romantic at the right time in the right place, but is that what comes to mind when you think of romance? Perhaps if your heart is still innocent, naïve, resembling a meadow in bloom, you still believe in these gestures and give them too much credit. The spell remains to be broken.

And when it’s been broken enough times, they won’t be able to cast that spell on you anymore. You just won’t be affected by those glittering, treacherous words or shining deeds and you won’t give in to any of it. You possess powers of your own now. You can see through it all. You can cut through the insincerity and get to the real mass. You’ve been through the rite of passage and you’ve been granted this remarkable ability which is going to save you a lot of time and feelings.

Your senses are tainted by cynicism and you doubt everything you see and hear and touch and feel. You laugh off words dripping with sweetness and bitterly refuse to believe there isn’t more to it. You overlook kindness and instead wonder about motives. You react coldly to warmth because you think it isn’t genuine and when it is, you won’t know it. Only broken strands of your shredded faith linger and they aren’t enough to make you believe. You’re a confirmed skeptic.

Now if a guy brings you flowers on a date, instead of thinking of how lovely a gesture it is, you consider it an inconvenient waste of his money because–oh god!–where are you going to keep them and how will you take them home on the subway and will you have to empty out the vases you’ve just arranged with flowers handpicked by you and, uh, is he simply trying to impress you? Well, he needn’t bother, you think, because you’re not going to fall for his little acts. You’ve got the gift of sight, you think, and you’ve earned it so you’re going to use it whenever you need to and whenever you can. You just know those flowers are a ruse.

You’ve realised that those great romantic acts are part of a highly transient phase so they mean little to you. You’ve realised that they’re merely components of pretty façades and it’s what lies within them that matters to you. So instead small acts of convenience start to hold more importance. Like a guy offering to bring the car around because it’s raining or just so you don’t have to walk that far.

It doesn’t matter if he says “I love you” automatically (not a very good thing, anyway) after every conversation because he’s attentive and he actually listens to you when you talk, whether about a good day or a bad one, and takes an interest in your life. It doesn’t matter if the gift he surprises you with is completely inexpensive because it’s extremely thoughtful and shows how well he knows you. Romance can be found in little gestures, like leaving the last cup of milk for your morning coffee which he knows you desperately need to wake up fully. But you’ll learn this only with time and experience. And with some dredged up faith.

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