Sunday, August 8, 2010

what if?

" 'What' and 'if' - two words as non-threatening as words come. But put them together side-by-side and they have the power to haunt you for the rest of your life. 'What if'..."
- Letters to Juliet

[This quote inspired the following words, originally written in my journal.]

I saw Letters to Juliet tonight. It's one of those cheesy chick flicks that's unreasonable, yet perfect.

It's the kind of movie that sends the taken girl straight from the theater into the open arms of her man, where she will settle eagerly, contentedly sighing and looking up into his face and seeing the movie's hero, her own personal Romeo. It's the kind of movie that leaves the single girl pining for the male lead, hoping that there's some fabulous "Charlie" who will fill the Romeo void in her life. For the girl in between, it's pure torture. The not knowing is the worst, which is something the movie got right. "What ifs" are terrible, but so are plain old "whats".

The "what are we", the "what is this", the "what are we doing here"...they're killing me. What ifs and whats are terrible.

I hate feeling as if I'd be better off never having met someone at all. Of course, a few days or weeks or months down the line, my tune changes and I can see the whole ordeal as the learning experience that it was. But while I'm in it? I can't stand it.

The worst part of anything is the not knowing. This applies to so many areas of life. People love to know things, and we have adjusted to essentially believing that knowing things is our human right. Whether it's how something works or how an event occurred or how someone is feeling, we as humans feel that it's our business, our God-given right to know.

But it isn't. We pretend that we don't mind when someone withholds information from us, but internally we're screaming, we're searching, we're panicking.

The not knowing is what keeps us human. It isn't our right to know everything, nor should we know everything if given the chance...yet here I sit. Everyone has something they want to know. A lot of these questions stem from hypothetical situations, the big "what ifs" of our lives.

What if I never...what if I would have...what if, what if, what if.

What if. Two very simple words that have such immense power to cause such terrible internal battles. These internal battles are one of the worst kinds, and they are from such small words...what if.

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