The writing was already on the wall but Sleepless in Seattle sealed my fate as a die-hard romantic. I remember it vividly, curled up on the sofa with my friend Sally and way too many chocolate treats for two people and a 90-minute film, as the magic between ‘Sam’ and ‘Maggie’ unfolded before my eyes. By the time Jimmy Durante was crooning out Make Someone Happy I was a gonner – I was a 16-year old madly in love with love!
And I couldn’t get enough of L-O-V-E love – films, books, music, even poetry (oh yes, I was a lot of fun), I needed to get my romantic fix. I didn’t realise it but my own quest for ‘magic’ had begun.
Over the (wince) 17 years that have passed since, I have thought of myself as somewhat of an expert on all things romance. Oh yes, there was a strict formula to this magic: thunderbolts, eyes meeting across a crowded room, love at first sight and a happy ever after, anything less was just not good enough. As you can imagine these high ideals have posed quite a challenge for my former beaus and, frankly, meant I often had a nagging feeling of disappointment that it just wasn’t happening for me.
So, with a mere 7 days to go until I say ‘i do’ how did my fairytale pan out? Fireworks and violins? Empire State Building on Valentine’s Day? Actually, it wasn’t what I imagined – far from it. It turns out my ‘happy ever after’ was right under my nose …. and far better than I could have imagined. ‘Our story’, one of an on-off courtship during which my loved ones could see what I was oblivious too, has become almost folklore-ish as the irony of the story gets re-played for laughs (oh yeah, I can’t wait for that in the speeches!). A blunt word from a friend and a nudge of the elbow from my sister had me open my eyes to the amazing man in front of me. It isn’t silverscreen-perfection but it’s real and certain and a match… and I’m extremely lucky. He is not the ‘happy ever after’ I imagined, he is my happy beginning. And I can’t wait for it to start.
Images: One Two