I watch too many sappy movies. I wear my heart on my sleeve. I've been called both a helpless – and a hopeless – romantic, and I'm ok with all of this. It's who I am, it's not something I'm even going to try and change. I'm comfortable in my own skin, being the person I am – faults and all – and maybe my willingness to open myself up & care for someone else is a weakness. Everyone has their own opinion.
But I'm also a storyteller. A writer. I live by the rule – well, the rules – that you should ask yourself two questions in every situation. 1. Are you having fun? If the answer is yes, good on ya. Proceed accordingly. If the answer is no, then continue on to question #2, which is "Is it a good story?" If yes, enjoy. If no, get the hell out. (This theory has worked well in my life, and provided more fodder for my memoirs than you can even imagine. Remind me to tell you about North Korea one day…) Anyway, I view the world, and my life, through this lens, often seeing situations for how they would later play out on paper (or on television, a movie screen, or even your computer.) Which serves me well as a writer, not so well as a somewhat-sensitive girl.
Because what I realized is that I look at my relationships in a similar way; as the story. Now, I'm not waiting for a white knight to appear or even for a Lloyd Dobler "In Your Eyes" boombox moment, but I do appreciate and value the Bold Move. You know the Bold Move…it's the critical "all or nothing" moment where you (or someone) lays it on the line. No going back. You say your peace, not doing so for any other reason than you need to do it. Need to put it out there. Need to put YOURSELF out there. Do it knowing the risk that's involved, that there's a damned good chance you're not going to get the outcome you'd like. And you do it anyway.
And as a writer, as a storyteller, this is where it gets hard. Because this is MY story, this is OUR story, but I'm not the author. I don't know the outcome. I can move one character – myself – through the plot, but I can't control the others. I can't control what's going to happen when the boombox is out of batteries. Don't know if the Bold Move will send me in the other direction on that invisible line called destiny, don't know how it will end. I just know I'm not ready for it to.
I wish I could cheat, flip to the last page and see how it all turns out, ensure that this, too, will be a mere chapter in what is a longer novel. That these downs are somehow replaced with a lot more ups, and that one day, you can skim the words that encompass when I'm going through during a difficult time.
I'm living my story, but I'm not writing it. And that's scary as hell. I just need to trust the author to write a happy ending, and in the meantime, live my story, for better or worth, taking the risks, doing the Bold Moves, and experiencing all that lies within. The jubilation. The heartbreak. The days when you're out of breath in sheer exhilaration, and the moments that you can't breathe because the pain of hurt is so bad.
Breathe in, breathe out. And trust that it will all end up ok. Count on it, enter in with blind faith, fingers crossed, believe in the goodness of people and the good in the world and that it will all be ok. It has to.