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Romance is in Rejecting the Notion of "The One"

This is a reblog from August 2012. I've watched Take This Waltz several more times since then and it always provokes the same reaction.

I'm sharing this today because it's Steve's and my fifth anniversary. All having gone well with the flights, we are in Paris. The timing happened by happy accident rather than romantic design. But, for the record, five years in, I'm even more certain of my choice:

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Do you believe in The One? Do you believe that there's one solitary person out there in the world who you are destined to be brought together with?

I know plenty of people who do.

But I'm not one of them. It's a lovely idea but it isn't for me.

I believe there are countless people out there who you - who I, who Steve - could be happy with.

For me, the romance isn't in fate bringing us together; for me, the romance is in somebody saying, "Of all the possible people I could have chosen to be with and all the possible lives I could have chosen to live, I absolutely know that I've found something wonderful, choosing to be with you."

Earlier this week, Steve and I watched Take This Waltz. It's worth seeing for the beautifully saturated images alone, but it's also a subtle, touching film about relationships. Michelle Williams and Seth Rogen play an apparently happily married couple living what looks like an idyllic life - they're writers; they live in a cute house in an arty neighbourhood; they have tons of friends around them and she has some lovely vintage dresses (what?!) - but when she develops a pretty major crush on the man across the road, she starts to wonder how much more exciting life would be with him.

I'm not going to spoil it by telling you what happens, but it got us talking about relationships as choices.

It got us talking about how every person has their strengths and their weaknesses, and how sometimes a partner can be so familiar that we forget about their strengths, or somebody else so shiny and new we don't stop to notice their flaws.

But, as somebody in the film said, "new gets old". The initial excitement of any new relationship fades away with time. The initial excitement of a replacement relationship would fade away as well.

The trick isn't finding somebody who keeps you anxious and obsessed for all the years to come; the trick is finding somebody who you will continue to cherish even when things become comfortable.

Because there will always be something shiny and exciting out there. There will, almost inevitably, be people in our lives who we could have had a good thing with. There will be options and opportunities.

To me, The One isn't a magical twist of fate. To me, The One is a person you choose, and there's nothing more romantic than being able to say, "For all the people who may cross my path, I could not be more sure of my choice to spend my life with you."

6 comments

  1. Love this post. Probably commented on it when you originally posted it, but I'm commenting again because I agree with it 100%. The older I get (and the more I've dated) the more I find this to be true.

    Really eager to watch the movie Take this Waltz now too. :)

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  2. Let me know what you make of it, if you do. It's one for when you're in a mellow mood.

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  3. True dat! Tom and I will have been together 5 years in August, exciting! Hope you enjoyed Paris. I watched Take this Waltz with friends again recently & they really didn't agree with her choice and felt sorry for Seth Rogen's character. It is an interesting one! x

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  4. Yeah, I personally think she makes the wrong choice but I also totally understand why she does (and want to shake her and tell her, "Nooooooo!").

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  5. This was an interesting read, I was never really one who thought of finding 'the one' either. It's nice to look at it from a different perspective. :)
    Heather

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Please play nice.