Why Does A Romantic Book End At The ‘Happily Ever After?’

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I suspect we all know the touching moment we waited for after we were going through the adventures of the romantic couple. We smiled with them when they found each other. We were happy with them when they fell in love. We cried with them when they lost each other because of some horrible misunderstanding. And, of course, we celebrated when they found each other again, kissed and ‘lived happily ever after.’

And now?

Don’t we ask ourselves how their wedding looked like? How are their families, how their friends? Don’t we wish sometimes we could play a ‘fly on the wall’ seeing how their relationship develops when challenged by marriage?

And that’s when my imagination runs wild.

Of course, it would be amazing and heartwarming to see their wedding. Because weddings are always touching and celebrating and viewing the ‘good’ in everything and everybody.

And then our couple moves in with each other. Both go to work… every morning she makes her favorite coffee, every morning he tells her that this particular brand gives him bad reflux. Then they climb in their own cars and drive off, only to see each other late at night, due to overtime and traffic jams.

She cooks, but he’s not home. Disappointed, she covers his meal and puts it away in the refrigerator, leaving him a note before she goes to bed. He comes home late, makes himself a sandwich because he can’t stand that particular dish, and never dared to tell her.

The weekends they often spend with their in-laws’ camping or in the one or other backyard with a barbecue. They can’t go on vacation… because they can’t get off the same time – and of course, they cannot stay away from work longer than a weekend.

Even though everyone waits for them to announce that they are expecting, that never happens because both are too busy to make money and soon buy their own house… Unfortunately, they don’t realize they are waiting too long until she’s in her forties and finally decides it might be too risky to have a child now.

Occasionally they’re going out for dinner, but mostly they don’t have to say much to each other unless they discuss the job… and then it’s Monday, and the routine starts from scratch.

They might buy the house everybody expects them to buy. It’s a breathtaking museum, but they’re too busy with their job to enjoy it… it’s not a home, it’s just a status symbol. And they both continue working.

And at one point they realize… they don’t have that much to say to each other. They don’t know, do we actually know each other? Or did we just rush into our marriage because everybody expected us to; our families, the readers…

Basically, their marriage is the wrong coffee, and a woman who cannot cook… it’s everything everyone expects, but to them, it’s just routine and boredom.

And that’s why a romantic book usually ends with the kiss and the ‘happily ever after.’

What Would I Say To My Younger Self?

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Dear AJ

In only a few short days it will be 2019 and I decided today, that it might be time to look back to your life and maybe help you out living it by sending you some advice. You’re 16 years old and I think it’s time you get some hints.

Just in case you think someone plays a trick on you, believe me, nobody does! Look at your desk. The lowest drawer, in the very back, there is a little envelope, glued to the bottom of the drawer. You remember you hid a love letter, a dried red rose and a silver necklace with a heart from your very first ‘boyfriend’ ever? How would I know about that if I wasn’t you? Let me tell you: one day you will regret the decision to throw that envelope away, after keeping it for more than 15 years. One day the world will be drowning in so-called ‘cell phones’ where you can talk on the phone and send messages all over the world, anytime, at any place, and secret love letter such as this one will cease to exist. Keep it in your heart, him, who has made your first kiss an unforgettable experience and, despite the age gap, treated you with utmost romantic respect, making your ‘relationship’ one of childlike innocence with no pressure and no demands.

But that is not the reason why I’m writing to you. I would like to tell you that your life is not going to be as easy as you thought it would be. In many ways, you are too trusting and if you don’t quit to believe every story people tell you and try to help them with whatever you own, early enough, you will go through quite poor times. Be a little trustful, be a bit more careful and please, be the tiniest bit more selfish. You will always do everything for everyone and too often you will face broken promises, downright lies and a hell of an empty bank account. You know how you grew up – with the natural helpfulness your Dad gave you, the sense for the responsibility you were taught and sensitivity you will find out years later, you have. You’re strong, you’re a fighter, but your nature makes it easy for people to use you. Don’t let that happen and set a ‘stop’ early enough! It’s easier to stay strong and say stop than using your strength to fix later what others did to you. Remember: If you are making yourself a doormat, don’t be surprised if everyone keeps wiping their boots on you!

Remember that several of your teachers mentioned that you are a talented writer? You love writing, poems, and stories equally! Essays are easy for you to write, and you love to build stories, fairy tales, and fantasy worlds. Keep it up, girl! Use this gift and start writing early. One day you will be able to publish by yourself! I know you write regularly, but don’t hide what you are writing! Soon enough you will see it’s a good idea to start letting people see it! One day, I promise, you will publish a book. I only wish you would do that earlier!

Other than that, I refrain from going any deeper into your life. You are emotional, passionate and stubborn. Who says which one of these is a virtue or a weakness? I found out, each has its place in your future. Things are going to be the way they were planned for you. Everything happens for a reason, and there is rarely a bad situation that doesn’t result in something good.

Just one more thing: If you are offered a great chance, take it! It’s good to balance the pros and cons, but if you keep balancing you might miss the chance! Don’t be too scared. Take the step and see where the path leads you to! You must know, there is nothing worse in your life than the regret about the opportunities you didn’t take!

Now take care, be a good girl and keep smiling. Your humor is one of the things in your life and personality that make you who you are!

With love, hugs and the best wishes for your (our) future!

AJ

Ain’t That The Truth?

 

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When I read this quote, I thought back to my life and was surprised I found nearly everything I thought “happened to me” that was painful, devastating, hard to take or heartbreaking (at least when it came to relationships) I had to go through all this to walk on a different path.
Most situations I was in, which I thought made me happy, were only a short illusion and neither one of them was good.

Now, each one of us, I think, has a different way to think “who” did change my/his/her situation. Some might think, it was ‘Karma,’ some may think it was, what it was, some may think, our life follows a certain path, and some others, including me, might think, God decided to show me a better direction.

One of my best friends once told me several times already: “God might have other plans with you.” And I think she’s right. However, it seems He’s quite busy keeping me on the path He has designed for me. My sense of orientation must be extremely lousy when He had to lead me back to the road ever so often.

I’m curious when I need to be saved the next time. But how do I know I’m going in the wrong direction, or I’m walking off the path that was created for me? Is this the ‘sense of life’ everybody speaks about? To know when to walk in the right direction, the one that takes you where you need to go? The one path that takes you directly to the Stairway to Heaven?

I sometimes wonder, what the future holds for me. But then: If we knew it ahead: Wouldn’t life be boring?


Picture courtesy of: https://www.insightforliving.ca/about/chuck-swindoll

Charles Rozell “Chuck” Swindoll (born October 18, 1934) is an evangelical Christian pastor, author, educator, and radio preacher. He founded Insight for Living, headquartered in Frisco, Texas, which airs a radio program of the same name on more than 2,000 stations around the world in 15 languages. He is currently senior pastor at Stonebriar Community Church, in Frisco, Texas.  (source: Wikipedia.com)