I am well aware that romance is an illusion with no permanence other than in the mind of the person who desires its lasting truth, yet that hasn’t prevented me from trying to daydream the illusion into my life. It would be lovely, I muse, for the man sitting next to me at this café, where I have come to write alone but to take a break from being by myself, to become overwhelmed by my intelligence that cannot help but emanate from me as I sit here contemplating this essay, although, in actuality, beginning a slow boil as the children playing “Don’t Wake Up Daddy” a couple of tables away keep waking up Daddy who wakes up making a lot of noise, and to be simultaneously overtaken by my Sunday morning peacefulness. Ah, the world could be such a lovely place, but then again, not so much because I have been occupied by this daydream on and off for years with barely a look over except to see if a chair could be taken.
I’m assuming that we are all obsessed, to some degree, with something and my obsession seems to be relationships. It occurred to me, finally (this morning), to stop apologizing to and for myself and just go with it. Is it really worse than a writer obsessed with murder or zombies or the trauma of war? I have decided to let myself luxuriate in my sense of wonder, for at 52 that is what it has morphed into. And, really, what does it say about me that I daydream about someone taking me to the airport and picking me up, with a desperate embrace on each end. Is it really a sign of my weakness as a woman that, although I have a good job and have raised two wonderful daughters and have survived an emotionally abusive marriage, that I have an itsy bitsy bit of emptiness that no class or hobby or volunteer activity will fill. And no one can take away my feminist stripes because I have no desire to hand over my life to anyone, I just want my heart to race when I think of him and I want his heart to race when he thinks of me. Is that a crime?
For a couple of moments there seemed that romance was in the air, but, as these things seem to happen with us people (as in anyone after college), the layers of our lives tend to tie us to the past more than to the future. And so it has dissipated with the residual impact being a re-clarification that I, indeed, am alone and that I, indeed, wish it weren’t so.