They say in Gujarati – કોઈનો પ્રેમ ક્યારેય ઓછો નથી હોતો, આપણી અપેક્ષાઓ જ વધારે હોય છે (it is never love, that fails you, only your expectations). Well, that is a loose translation, but I think it is true for most people. We believe that the only way to love and be loved is our own way. We want the same expression of feeling from our loved ones that we use. But it is a very rare occurrence, that you would be loved the way you love.
I am a big fan of love stories, I spend hours on them, and hundreds too, but it is a rare love story that actually stays with you. I can list my favourite ones – they’re both books and cinema! Interestingly, I prefer love stories with happy endings, but most that I like as books are sad ones. My own love affair with books is a beautiful story in itself, see promises elsewhere on this blog.
So, the cinematic love stories I love Pretty Woman, You’ve Got Mail, Dr. Zhivago, Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Jab We Met, Pyaar To Hona Hi Tha – I can add a bit to the list, but that would be dragging it – because I didn’t think of those names before. What is common about all these lovely films is that they all have good music (barring You’ve Got Mail), and there’s perfect chemistry between the main characters. All of them talk about disappointment in love and yet, the phoenix like quality of love of being built from ashes. They bind me to the screen, mesmerised, laughing, crying, shouting, smiling with the characters – yes, I do that in cinema – good cinema for me is that which takes me with the flow.
When I think of books, there’s Love Story, The Thornbirds, and the O’ Henry short story, Gift of the Magi. The binding thread in each of these stories is the tragedy that befalls its main characters, when they least expect it. And yet, their relationship emerges stronger than ever, building on the love that they have for each other. I keep telling people that I hate tragedies, and yet, it is that tragic event,which leaves the character grief-stricken which strikes a chord with me!
So, while I fantasize about being loved like the heroines of these stories, I know that the love that I have from people around me, though it may be very different from what I expect, if the force which pushes me through life. There are friends whom I see once in years, some even less, some daily, some once in a blue moon. There’s extended family, a lot of whom I see may be once every five years and yet, every time that I meet any of them, I know that they care as much as I do. They say that words are the way to convey your feelings, but actions, to me speak louder than words! And so, the only expectation that I have is to be loved like this always – kick me if I am wrong, hug me if I am sad, and hold me hand if I falter – I am relying on you!