Some things stick with you, I guess.
Like that episode of Sabrina The Teenage Witch where Harvey made her a Valentine’s card but he was so obsessed with it being symmetrical that he kept cutting it smaller and smaller, and in the end he could only fit on ‘Happy Val Day, Sab’, but then the knowledge that he liked symmetry became crucial in a test of Sabrina’s love that would decide his fate. Or something.
I thought about that episode when I was hitching a ride from a shady older lady who was scared to give me her real name so called herself Sabrina, and I thought about it today when considering the possibility of a Valentine’s Day post.
For a long time I had a story that I’d never received a Valentine’s card. That changed in 2017, courtesy of my son’s father. He even wrote me a poem inside. It was an excellent first Valentine’s Day card . It was small and simple – tasteful, even – and the poem was sweet, but suitably tongue in cheek, and admirably executed. It was a truly beautiful thing he did for me and, despite the torrent of sludge that followed between then and now, I still look back on it with pleasure, gratitude and a kind of quiet awe. I keep it in my box of memories, and I imagine I will keep it there for as long as I have a box of memories.
There was never a follow up though. And I don’t mind – it’s not a thing that troubles me, and it’s not a thing I hanker after. But it’s sobering, sometimes, to think, on the one hand, how eager I am to just fucking pour out love onto somebody else in every way I can imagine and, on the other, how easily fucking pleased I am with the smallest of affectionate gestures. How little it takes for my mind to be blown.
It honestly probably scares me more than anything else to imagine someone giving me the kind of love that I want to give to someone else. Not because I don’t want it. Not because I think I don’t deserve it. Rather because it is so precisely, exactly, exquisitely what I do want and deserve that it would catapult me into some other plane of existence that I can’t fully comprehend.
I have earned a person who wants to pour love onto me. And I have earned a person who values the love I want to pour onto them. Not that you should have to earn that, but I fucking have anyway. I have earned a new plane of existence. And I do want to go there, scary though it may be. But I wonder…if I’m still scared of it, are they too? Is the person I am theoretically seeking to exchange with mirroring my apprehension? And, if so, where do I go from here, to get to there?