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  • Christine Grace Ruta

Once Upon a Time: A Lesson on Fairytales, Love, & Life

Literary Art ⬝ Christine Grace Ruta

Covert Art ⬝ Maya Angelou Nievares

I once thought love was simple.

You love, care, give your all to someone, and if you’re lucky, they love you back.

But life has a funny way of letting me know I was wrong.

No, not wrong. But it taught me that love, through my eyes, was incomplete.

Life taught the ultimate lesson to me by destroying love.

Love, who was once my knight in shining armor, became the villain of the story.

Love became the enemy.

It held my heart in its hands, promised to cherish it with all its being, but eventually, it gripped my heart too much, that all notion of it beating was shattered. And yet my heart relented, and said, “If that is love, I’ll let you have your fill, I’ll smile, let you hold me until your hands bleed.”

And Love, Love rejoiced.

Love cut my heart into pieces and told me how much he loved me. My heart cried out in pain and smiled, “Thank you. If that is love, I’ll let you.”

Love continued to “cherish” my heart the way it did. Until one day, my heart stopped talking, my heart stopped smiling. My heart wasn’t working up to Love’s standards.

And Love, Love discarded it faster than yesterday’s trash, and found another heart, another soul to love.

And life, through time, showed me that “Love” was not a knight in shining armor nor a prince, but a toad. Just a toad. And the love I received was not love at all.

Maybe at first, it could be. But the toad chose something else.

And stopped choosing me.

“Why didn’t you just tell me it wasn’t love?” I asked Life.

“If I told you, would you have listened?” Life said.

And I can’t help but smile, even with tears falling from my eyes.

Slowly and patiently, however, as time went by, Life breathed life back into my heart.

And one day at a time, it smiled

and smiled

and smiled

and smiled

until smiling didn’t hurt anymore.

Life taught my heart that love could be choosing myself. And if that’s all I have, then it’s more than enough.

I walked through life, head held high, proud of the lessons it taught me. Thinking how much better my life is now that I’m alone.

Until one day, I met you.

Your eyes was full of laughter and kindness, of mischief and fun.

And I haven’t looked at someone’s eyes for a long time the way I looked at yours.

I found the ocean and its depth. I found the sun and its warmth. I found the lens through your soul, of stability and real strength, of faith and pure heart. I found how your eyes and your smile could disarm me and I found out that someone could make me happy again in a way that nobody has made me feel in a long, long time.

And Life whispered through my ears, “That, that is real love.”

And I called you Love, ever since.

The love that you have shown me, I haven’t found in anyone else. A love that is patient, that is kind, that does not envy, and does not boast. A love that doesn’t keep a record of right and wrongs. A love without all the negativities of pride, a love that is not selfish. A love without agenda. A love that is pure.

A love like fire, in a way that its warmth makes me feel safe. But unlike fire, it doesn’t burn, it doesn’t willingly inflict pain.

A love that makes me burn with passion, but also a love that is secure and safe.

A love that is gentle and a love that understands.

A love that puts pride aside, and says sorry if it’s needed.

A love that respects me, and holds me on days I can’t hold myself.

A love that is not perfect, but the kind of love that I needed.

Thank you, Love, for showing me that love is still possible for me. Thank you for being so understanding and kind. Thank you for loving me, even though it’s easier not to.

Thank you for the wonderful days you’ve shared with me.

I love you for every single one of them. Even on the days I push you away.

Thank you, Love. My heart is yours.

© The Middle Mag PH