I grew up believing everyone had a Great Love just waiting for them, like it was some universal promise. We are born and die, and somewhere in between, we are lucky enough to spend our days with a soulmate.
I was obsessed with the romance to it. To think this one person, out of all the billions, was out there, looking up at the same sky – I was high just from the idea. One day, I would meet someone with the pieces that formed perfectly into my jigsaw heart. And that would be it.
It would be that easy.
And for a long time, I hoped it would be.
But then I got older, definitely not wiser, and learned love isn’t a calculated thing. Often, it’s trial and error. You try and it doesn’t work, or you try and someone doesn’t reciprocate. Your heart is broken, but the bruises lighten and you try again. Maybe you break a few hearts in your path. But it’s nothing like you thought it would be. People don’t magically appear like an 11:11 wish. That’s naive. That’s not realistic.
I decided soulmates were like Santa Claus, fun to believe, but something you eventually outgrow. Eventually, the years will carve your edges a little sharper, a little less forgiving. We start to rewrite our fantasies and settle on doable ones.
But then, there you were.
You showed up when my heart was at its most cynical.
You came about when I rolled my eyes at commercials for sappy movies because, CLEARLY, that stuff is fairytale nonsense.
But you, with your crinkly smile and deep brown eyes, showed up at my door like I was some Ebenezer Scrooge, curmudgeonly and full of doubt. You looked at me with that half moon smile and I forgot how to breathe. You cracked that hard shell I’d been accumulating and, just like that, I was putty again. I was wide-eyed and looking at the stars with wonder.
The first time you kissed me, I forgot about all my bitterness. I forgot about the heartaches and the “almosts” and the things that fell short. I forgot about the crying at 2 am and decision to blacken my tender heart. All of that shit just slipped away the first time your lips brushed against mine.
You have renewed my faith with every little thing you do. I’m endlessly in love with your kindness, your thirst for knowledge, your undeniable passion. My life is better just by having you in it.
Maybe soulmates aren’t just fictional. Maybe some people mean too much to call them anything else.