When the girl came to clean my room yesterday, she noted that there weren’t any cards or flowers from my husband. I smiled and explained that he’s not a card and flowers kind of guy. She asked, “well, how do you know that he loves you?”
I was surprised at her question, and her apparent need for material objects to know that she is loved, but I kindly explained that we’ve been together a long time and that what he does for me shows his love for me. She’s young; she’ll figure it out someday.
Recently, someone asked me where my Twitter name, APilgrimSoul, comes from. It’s from the Yeats poem “When You are Old.” My favorite recitation of it occurs in the movie Peggy Sue Got Married, when Peggy Sue (played by Kathleen Turner) spends time in a field with the cool poet dude, Michael Fitzsimmons. I wish I could find a clip of it on the interwebs, but I didn’t have any luck. He recites the poem to her as he seduces her, and yes, I’ve always wanted a man to do that to me. Just sayin’. (Also, just for the record, I’d love someone to pull a Lloyd Dobler for me).
The line “one man loved the pilgrim soul in you” has always been my favorite. I loved the idea that one man recognized me for who I truly was, and loved me for it.
Confession: Even more so, I loved the idea of being the object of unrequited love. I know, I know, I’m horrible. But there have been so many cases in my life when I loved (or crushed on, whatever) someone, and they didn’t feel the same way. I always wondered if there was someone out there who liked me, and I either had no idea, or I didn’t/wouldn’t feel that same way about them. Is that horrible? Go ahead, call me Estella. (Also, perfect unrequited love song:
The premise of the movie also appeals to me because, despite my desire to just Let Things Go, there’s always been a part of me that wonders…what if? What if I’d chosen differently? Now, please know that I love my life, and that I’m not sitting here longing for a different one. But as I get older, I look at the key moments of my life and wonder what would have happened if I’d chosen differently.
I’ve been with The Hubs a long time. We’ve known each other for 20 years (since freshman year of high school…yes, we’re old), and have been together (this time) for 15 years. We’ve been through a lot together, and I’m so grateful to have him by my side. He’s flawed, as we all are, but he is a good man. And he loves me.
I’ve been told, by more than one man, that I’m difficult to love. Many of them have (independently…or at least, I don’t think they’ve consulted each other on this) said that “She’s Always a Woman” by Billy Joel reminds them of me. And maybe that was true of me in my teenage years or early 20’s. OK, and maybe a smidge true even today.
Looking back, I realize that for a LONG time, I didn’t know how to accept being loved. Really. I never felt worthy of it. I could never believe that anyone could love me. Sad, eh?
I was in a relationship for almost four years, from ages 16-20. It was a horrible relationship, but I didn’t realize that at the time. We spent every moment together at school and work. I gave up an opportunity to go away to college so that I could stay near him. I stopped seeing my friends, and spent little time at home. He was just an all-around jackass, but I wasn’t able to see that until we broke up. I thought that because he constantly told me that he loved me, and bought me gifts all the time, that he truly loved me. He didn’t. He wanted me to be someone other than who I was. Someone obedient, and who didn’t want anything other than to work for the family business. I so wasn’t that girl.
The thing is, about 2 years into the relationship, I realized that I didn’t want to be with him anymore, but I was too afraid to leave. I didn’t think anyone else would love me. There was another man whom I adored, and really wanted to be with, and he wanted to be with me (I think), but I stayed in the horrible relationship because I was afraid. I didn’t see how the other man could love me. Seriously! He was so smart, and funny, and I was so afraid that I wasn’t good enough for him. I was so, so stupid. I should have just kissed him and been honest with him. And, yes, there are times I wonder what would have happened if I would have told him how I felt.
Ah, there’s no use in rehashing this now. It happened a lifetime ago. And it brought me to where I am right now. And, honestly, even if I did have the chance like Peggy Sue to go back and do it all over, I’m sure I would have still ended up with my husband.
I think my point is that I’m glad I can now accept love, and recognize that I’m worthy of being loved. I wish I would have known that back then.
Do you, dear reader, have a hard time accepting that you’re worthy of love? Do you ever wonder what your life would be like if you’d chosen differently?
Also, because it fits (somewhat) with this post, and I just adore this song, here’s some Colin Hay for you: