Friday, 19 July 2013

Im-Perfect Love

I just saw A Walk to Remember tonight for the first time and my first thought was, What a stupid movie! The very fact the leading lady dies in the end is a put off for me. See I love fiction. I love movies and books and poetry and dramas of the fictitious variety. I believe that life is full of too much sorrow and hatred, violence and blood shed to begin with. So in my mind, fiction keeps hope alive. It makes a person want to persevere to be better. To be better daughters or sons, better husbands or wives, better workers or employers, but most importantly better people. When I read a book or see a movie, the eternal optimist in me comes out. I want the hero and the heroine to end up together. I want the world to be saved. I want the strength and dignity of the people in these books or movies preserved. In my mind it is bigger than the story. It is sacrosanct.

And that is why I hate the movie. But beyond that, as I sitting thinking about how much I DONT like the movie, a thought occurs. The movie talks about the concept of the elusive perfect love. A love so deep and abiding it touches the soul. A love so pure and selfless it makes the onlooker envious. It talks of a love that is, "always patient and kind. It is never jealous. Love is never boastful or conceited. It is never rude or selfish. It does not take offense and is not resentful. Love takes no pleasure in other people’s sins, but delights in the truth. It is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope, and to endure whatever comes." In other words, a love that is perfect.

What I realize is that it is easy for love to be all those things, for it to be perfect, when all it has is a summer. When eventually the heroine is going to die of Leukemia and the hero is all to willing to put his life, his dreams and ambitions on hold, to accommodate her and her dying wishes. For the heroine to inspire the hero to be a better person.

In reality however, I think love is imperfect. There are always going to be times when it all the things the author mentions, but there also going to be times when love is impatient or unkind. When it is boastful or conceited, rude or selfish. All to often it takes offence, and many a times it is resentful. Love is in contradiction. It is contradictory in its outlook and manifestation from moment to moment, and it a collection of all the perfect and imperfect moments that create the epic saga called life.

So how is it that we measure if for the most part love was patient or impatient, kind or unkind? Is there a benchmark that declares, say for instance, that if for 50% of the time love was patient and kind, not boastful or conceited, rude or selfish, then it is perfect? I think for the most part love is a collection of perfect and imperfect moments, and by that definition, for the most part love is imperfect. It will either  make you bend or make you want to make someone else bend. It will either be jealous or make jealous, it be rude or suffer at the hands of rudeness. It will make you want to stand up, or make the other person stand down. For the most part love is in the monotony. It is in fighting over who makes morning coffee (or tea) or who forgot to switch off the lights. It doesn't reside in the short term plenty, but in long term inadequacies.

So given a choice between a short term perfect love or a long term imperfect one, I guess I'm ok being imperfect. I'm ok being rude or jealous sometimes and patient or kind other times. I'm ok as long as in the end through all the highs and lows, through all the imperfections, the love has survived and made me a better person than I was yesterday. That to me is Imperfect Love, and it is better than Perfect any day.
Photo Credits: Alma Wedding Photography


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  2. Cold hearted as it may sound, but I don`t quite agree to the idea of a happy ending. to me its nothing more than a form of escapism. Films are no different than reality, where everyday a new chapter unfolding, emotional ups and downs, which on any day, would beat a classic daily soap on its twists and turns.. and then there are films which lead us to believe that the ending is going to be perfect. The fact remains, that it rarely is.. The hero dies for his love, transforms his life and becomes a completely different form for her. Coming back to reality, it never happens. We either learn to live without it of find a new, sometimes in a matter of days, at other times in months or years. You say love is contradiction and its the perfect and imperfect moments that make this epic saga of life. Well what I've seen is that in most of the cases it just doesn't have enough to last the distance. In some cases, where people involve government leaving the partner with no choice to flee (read: MARRIAGE), it ends up only being a big adjustment and habituation. In the rarest of rare cases, where it never ends up being so, it's never a contradiction and only love that lasts.
    I know its severely harsh, but I dont expect you to agree and would surely welcome your side of it. :-)


    1. Shashank Gupta I can give you my side but from experience I know it won't make a rats ass worth of difference. So instead I'm going to quote Socrates, "By all means Marry. If you find a good wife you will become happy. If you find a bad one you will become a philosopher."

    2. Well said.. your experience was spot on here.. By the way, your own Socrates, who's been quoted so beautifully here, got married at 66. He knew better than to follow his own words.. :p