When did you first realize the power of love?
As a young girl, I spent a lot of time listening to the Muppets Frog Prince on vinyl. Every time, I cheered when the Princess Melora kissed Robin the Frog, because I knew he would turn back into a prince and they would spend their lives together, happily ever after.
After I learned to read, I was a big fan of all of the Grimms Fairy Tales and the Arabian Nights because even though the characters went through horrible things, they always got their happy ending.
When I got a little older, Gone With the Wind became my favorite love story. Mom and I watched it every year when it came on network television. (Yes, these were the days before HBO and VCRs.) Even though Margaret Mitchell left the ending up in the air, I think we all know that Scarlett and Rhett got their happy ending, too.
What is it about falling in love and ending up together that is so timeless?
We know that many relationships don’t end with us walking happily into the sunset, flushed with the knowledge that we have found a life partner who will never hurt us, never forsake us, and never forget to put the toilet seat down or put his dirty socks in the hamper. We know that the ending of our favorite stories is often just the beginning of a whole new set of trials and tribulations that doesn’t always have a happy ending. But we eat up our happy endings all the same.
Is it a matter of escapism? Are romances an outlet for our unflappable idealism? Do we sometimes need a reminder of what unconditional, happy love feels like?
For me, it’s all of the above. I love to escape to a world where the end result of a romantic encounter is happiness. I love to be reminded of my deep-seated idealism and belief that not only can we all be happy but that we deserve it. What about you? What do you feel when you read a good love story?