In My Words: Looking Beyond Happily Ever After
The realist in me knows there is more to happily ever after than fairy tales tells us.
Cinderella marries the prince. Ditto Snow White and Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel and Belle and Ariel. We close the storybook or watch the movie screen fade to black, the words "And They Lived Happily Ever After" disappearing as the houselights brighten.
Or is it?
In a fairy tale, sure. The words "Happily Ever After" sum up the rest of the story.
But what about real life--the world you and I live in?
I don't know about you, but I don't live inside a fairy tale. My husband Rob is a wonderful guy--truly heroic in many ways. But there was no Walt Disney-inspired magic about our relationship--no fairy godmother or lost glass slippers or spells to be broken. We fell in love, experiencing emotional bumps and bruises along the way.
When we vowed to love one another "for better, for worse," we never imagined how bad "worse" could be. We were optimistic, hope-filled newlyweds, oh-so-clueless about marriage.
Falling in love is an a-ma-zing experience. Consider romance movies or novels--aren't they mostly about two people falling in love, despite obstacles and misunderstandings and those "we shouldn't fall in love but we are" feelings warring against one another?
Staying in love--what happens beyond happily ever after--that's what real life is about. Consider these lyrics from the song "Happy Ending" by Sugarland:
What about you? Do you like both romance and realism in a book? Or is a romance novel an escape from real life pressures, allowing you to savor a happy ending without the intrusion of any harsh realities?