You swore. You pinkie promised the little girl that managed to survive inside of you that you’d never go there again within yourself. The land you visited, the land you that you discovered that one sunny day in the mid-afternoon unexpectedly would be barricaded became open again. It beckoned… It told you it was okay to return and rest upon the grass and the open, wild fields it offered.
You knew it was lying. And yet you went.
And with those first hesitant steps you knew you were walking into the unknown. A territory that lacked rules, expectations. More importantly, you knew it lacked justice.
But for a girl… woman?… who loved justice, you still stepped quietly looking to explore. You’d heard about this place. A foreign world of selflessness where the governing rule was emotion and instinct. It sounded wildly bueautiful and exotic. What a thing, you had thought to yourself, to abandon the thoughts you so clutched to.
Returning, you realized, was not so scary. It was not as frightening, because you were armed with the knowledge of what to avoid. You knew what would damage you, and you recognized the dangers within this land but you never turned away even as your heart sped and your rational abilities evaporated into the sweet air. You had returned. And you were bold now. You weren’t scared.
You were alone. And you found that the air you had once so enjoyed as a breeze delivering the aroma of flowers and pine and grass was now reduced to a simple chill that reminded you of the lack of arms around you. The air was the echo of your solidarity of which you were both proud and ashamed. You had struggled to retain your independence. You worked, hard and silently, simply to be alone. And this made you sad. It made you, among other things that you could not name… confused.
The same eloquence that had been granted you here before had been revoked. Instead of plenty of words and a rushing of emotion you were solemnly observant. You had learned, since the last walk you had taken along these grounds, to be stoic. Your recongnition of the flaws posessed within this land was painful and it embarrassed you of the person you were in your last visit. You were ashamed of her former charming naivety, and you were ashamed of you current cynicism.
But you refuse to leave. Instead of looking for an exit or a path outward you sat. You picked at the leaves of grass and felt the wind’s reminders of your soul’s silence. Nothing rushed inside of you that day- and the river of your emotions remained constant regardless of the trinkets of the past that you crossed on your return’s travels. The bench where you both sat. The picture you took. The letters you wrote. The words that flowed that meant not much then that carried the weight of the universe in their memories. Nothing can move you now. It seems the air is mimicking your fortitude…. it blows, but falsely. Nothing moves because of it.
Perhaps you imagined it. It would not be the first time you felt something that was in fact, not there.
Sigh. You are older, now. A year older. You know the days have passed, and the required number of weeks have qualifed you into a new category of year of birth, but you are older in new ways. Your heart moves slower and your reactions lack the enthusiasm you knew them once to be capable of. It’s not their fault, you think to yourself. How could I have known that it… and then you stop the thought. The same thought you’ve echoed within yourself so many millions of times. You couldn’t have known.
You couldn’t have known. You couldn’t have stopped yourself. You couldn’t have prepared your heart. You couldn’t have protected yourself. You couldn’t have spared your future. You couldn’t have stopped the walls from forming. You couldn’t have known. You couldn’t have slowed the motions. You couldn’t have removed his hands. You couldn’t have known. You couldn’t have expected he would kiss you that way. You couldn’t have known. You couldn’t have seen what you would end up as. You couldn’t have realized it would hurt this way.
You couldn’t have known.
You couldn’t have known.
And even if you could have.
What would become of you then?
Maybe it’s me being emotional because I’m on my period. Maybe it was the ice cream. Maybe it’s the stress. Maybe it’s the suspiciously long recovery from the 4th of July spent exactly how the founding fathers would have wanted— with shots of Jameson in dimly lit bars…. But Jebus I’m freaking out about being a cat lady.
Have you ever seen Say Anything with John Cusak? It’s absolutely everything you could ever want in a cheesy 80’s chick flick. Before we got all 500 Days of Summer/maybe happy endings are all bullshit, the 80’s fucking nailed the idea of work hard enough and you get the girl/guy. Our generation, once again everybody- say it with me, SUCKS.
So long story short, John Cusack is kind of a weird creepy dude who falls for quintessential overachieving ASB girl that nobody in real life would actually befriend, she falls for him (thereby significantly lowering her standards and probably setting herself up for a lifetime of mediocrity and frustration), then her dad is a money launderer (?) and she breaks up with poor John because… I don’t know… she thinks that having a boyfriend is related to her father being a criminal?
Anyway, guess what John does. GUESS! He stands outside her window at dawn (or dusk… lighting is pretty shitty in the 80’s, not sure), and holds what appears to be a 45 pound boombox over his head playing Phil Collins into her bedroom window. I about cried. Okay, I teared up.
And then I did what every girl does when we watch these movies…. I thought to myself, “Hold on… how come nobody ever did this for ME?” Okay, I admit I’m not even sure that grand gestures really exist or if Hollywood invented them just to make sure that all men will never measure up, but still… The grandest gesture I’ve ever experienced was a picture in High School from my boyfriend where he wrote I<3 U in the sand at the beach in Diet Coke…
Which, looking back is actually pretty sweet, but something a homeless person probably could have managed with a stolen camera.
What I’m trying to say is Say Anything is my dream movie. It was everything you ever wanted in a cheesy romance: weirdly intense face grabbing while kissing outside, rambling speeches about completely unrestrained mushiness, and of course, a grand gesture from a guy to a girl who probably doesn’t really deserve it anyway.
I’m not saying I deserve it. I’m not saying I even kind of deserve someone irritating my neighbors just to press me (sigh), but it’d be pretty spectacular. Should a romantic comedy ever be written about my life it will be some joke of a girl who offends everybody, manages to mess everything up (in a completely NOT adorable, endearing way), gets her period in the guy she likes’ bed (TWICE!– sorry, Libra) and then ends up with the guy she hated but she’s so worn down by scaring everyone away that she just gives up since she doesn’t want to be a cat lady. And that’s not romantic at all. It’s scary, actually.
God… my romantic movie sounds a little bit like that awful 80’s movie Carrie. That’s encouraging.