Saturday 30 April 2016

Thought Picnic: No Fairy Tales

The things we can’t escape
One morning on my taxi cab ride to work, I reflected on a sad reality that has been a constant refrain in my own narrative. The fact that amongst my closest relationships, I have not found examples of matrimonial bliss to encourage me to embark on or wish for one.
Much as I have for myself found companionship at certain times quite rewarding and cherished memories of those now passed, there never seemed to be a fairy tale element to any of those liaisons. Rather, they were fraught with the inadequacies, failings, troubles, compromises, adjustments, tolerances and more.
Suffice it to say that none were of the prospect of marriage vows but for the moment, the time, the season, the embrace. This became so evident when just for the brief time of company, just the embrace, feel and feeling was enough. I've become one with a low bar of expectations.
A scion of rift
The non-divorce of my parents has had a most damaging effect on my enduring capacity, though I have fought not to be a non-distinguishable product of their détente and animus, the pictures from when I had any perception of what was going on have become indelibly etched into the landscape of the mind, they are a prism to a bad focus on engagement, quite unhealthy and sad.
It is for this reason too that I rarely wade into the feathers of playfulness or muck of disagreeableness whipped up by concord or conflict between partners, it is usually more complicated than what appears on the surface. The investment when it goes bad is a sum much less than the parts that went into it. No actions in word or in deed can ever fully express when relationships break up, none.

No fairy tales in real life
This is before we consider the pressures that come in, in terms of roles and expectations of the partners, the emotional losses, the mental anguish and even elements of mental illness that presents in anger, in bitterness, in rancour, in desperation, in vengeance and sometimes, self-harm.
No marriage is made in heaven; we all have to work at it on earth. It is harder work that any could have imagined on the day of the nuptials. Yet, I rejoice with those who are happy and commiserate with those who are sad, I offer an ear to listen and a shoulder to cry on.
I would never know what you’re going through, but I will understand that you’re going through a lot, hoping that there is some future ahead that will allow you live a fulfilled life regardless of how things about that relationship turns out.
In the words of Anita Baker, there is no fairy tale in relationships, the reality is so stark that this is what we are left with;
You never came to save me, you let me stand alone
Out in the wilderness, alone in the cold
I found no magic potion, no horse with wings to fly
I found the poison apple, my destiny to die
No royal kiss could save me, no magic spell to spin
My fantasy is over, my life must now begin.
Fairy Tales (Lyrics),
sung by Anita Baker,
written by Anita Baker, Michael J. Powell & Vernon Fails

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