In moments like this I ask myself why we go on believing in fairy tales, even in our mature years. I suppose the problem resides in all those damningly romantic books we read in our youth, and sometimes throughout our lives – as is my case – that insidiously convince us there is, somewhere in our life, a true love waiting for us, and it will one day arrive, no matter how late it may be.
No to mention the incredibly romantic songs we hear, from the “kings of romance” such as Julio Iglesias and Roberto Carlos (known in Brazil as “the King”), but also those that have a special meaning to us, because they are related to very special moments of our lives, such as, in my case, “Wish you were here” by Pink Floyd or “Heaven” by Bryan Adams and so many others…
When we met, I had ceased to believe in love – I had lived a great disappointment for many years, and had finally freed myself from it, but was far from wanting a new romantic entanglement – I thought I had had enough. I had my children, my career, my friends, I was free… and happy as it was.
But then you came and suddenly all the stories went alive in my mind and the songs were playing again and once again I believed a fairy tale was possible, or rather, that a love story with a happy ending might still happen to me. I thought I had finally – at long last – found that one true love that had been in hiding for so long, only to show itself when I was prepared, rid of previous relationships, ready to start anew.
And ours was a truly romantic story. You will remember as well as I those first secret meetings, stolen weekends in secluded places where no one might find us, romantic candlelit dinners in small restaurants in the old part of town – I particularly remember an Indian one near the entrance to St. George’s castle and climbing up the hill to get there, hugging each other because of the cold and laughing like mad, because we were, madly happy – in brief, the excitement of all new relationships.
That crazy, exciting feeling could not last forever, and we knew it – but even after we became official, and families and friends came into the equation, we felt happy together, secure in our love for each other; we still laughed and had our special moments. I remember our travels, discovering the world together, working as a team: I would choose the place and say what I wanted to see, and you’d take care of the organization, always impeccable.
With my independent spirit, I felt you took care of me; you actually cared for me. I felt loved, cherished, alive. I felt our love would last for the rest of our lives.
But I should have known better, for fairy tales are liars and rarely are there happy endings for love stories, much less loves that last forever. I should have known already, but once more I deluded myself.
After a few years things began to change. I say you have changed completely; you will say the same about me, perhaps. Slowly, we grew apart, we began having different interests to a point where we rarely spent time together. We became a farce – but still I hoped, I persisted in the idea that maybe one day things might go back to what they were. After all, you are still the same person, outwardly – but you have become another, completely different being, inside.
So, I got disappointed. And more disappointed. And no matter how I persisted in not seeing it, not accepting it, this disappointment grew inside me, became huge, and at some point, could no longer be ignored – it was devouring me. And that’s why I have to let you go. Accept defeat, once again, and promise myself – this time, no more love stories, no more romantic songs. At least not to believe in.
The dreaded time has come. Once, when our relationship was young and our love was strong, they used to play a ballad on the radio by James Blunt, called “Goodbye my lover”. It is a beautiful but very sad song of goodbye. You refused to listen to it; you found it too sad, even if you wouldn’t even consider it might happen to us, and I agreed, as I felt our love would always be there. But, my dear, we should have known better – “forever” should be a forbidden word in the realm of love, for it rarely applies to it, thus contributing to great pain and heartbreak.
The song by James Blunt has finally caught up with us, and there’s no escaping it. In the end, it is also a love story, only without the illusion of fairy tales. It’s a real-life love story, and ours, like that one, is over. Even if it means another disappointment, the time has come for us to say goodbye.