So it's Valentine's Day -- which is either filled with chocolates, gobs of romance and schmoopy kisses or you just want to riddle Hallmark and Cupid full of bullets -- and me being in a rather gothy mood, I'm musing about death, love and chocolates covered strawberries.
I'm starting to realize that the hardest thing about growing up is realizing my mortality. Maybe it's the recent storyline in Something Positive (start with this and just keep reading)but love for me isn't just about the candy hearts and that thrill of the first toe-curling kiss. It's also about the dread about losing someone that you've invested your life with.
It's inevitable really. The older we get, the more connections we make in life either from lovers, friends, spouses, family or just staying still in a single place. The unfair part of the bargain is that someday they're either leaving or you're leaving them behind. The reasons vary -- moving, break-ups and death -- but no matter what, someone gets left behind.
Dan Savage's observation in The Commitment that being in a long term relationship is like having all the low drone of being alone compound interest. When one partner leaves, dies, whatever, then all of that comes crashing at your door, knocking you senseless like you've been visited by a particularly nasty repo man.
So why do we do it? I can't see any reason not to. I like having my roots and connections. I love my family and friends. I love being with my husband with every fiber of my being. I can imagine my life without him, but it's so dark that it's hard to stare that down -- and I'm referring to someone who naturally goes there and lingers in the darkness for as long as she can.
I know the price that I'm ultimately going to pay (either one way or another) and it's frightening, but I'm so far gone anyways that I might as well ride this sucker out to the very end. Either way the end will hurt like hell, so I might as well get as much pleasure as I can now.