“I fell in love the first time I saw you. You’re the most amazing, beautiful girl I ever met… and somehow… I don’t know, somehow you chose me. But how I loved you then… it’s nothing compared to how I love you now. Now, I love you with everything inside of me. I think you should go. I love you so much, I just want you to be happy. Even if that happiness no longer includes me.”
“Love requires sacrifice, always.” — Nicholas Sparks, The Longest Ride
I am a big Nicolas Sparks fan and that would be no secret to anyone that truly knows me. He‘s published many books, several of which have been made into films such as The Longest Ride, Dear John, A Walk to Remember and The Notebook.
Admittedly, I have never read the books, but I have watched most of the screenplays because I can identify with many of the feelings, emotions and themes of his work.
If his work doesn‘t reach your deep-down sense of a true-love relationship, nothing probably will.
No relationship is perfect and sometimes, like the lede quote suggests, it‘s sometimes best to let someone you love go and be happy — even if it means going on without you.
I‘m not totally sure this is reality any more, although I must admit, it does happen; even if surreptitiously to the one you let go of.
As a romantic, I‘d like to think everyone who says they are in love are the sacrificing kind, but love requires sacrifice from both people in a relationship.
You see, it‘s not enough just to say I love you if you aren’t ready and willing to make sacrifices along the way — real sacrifices. If you have to think about whether you love someone, chances are you don’t. True love is not something you have to think about.
If you‘ve let someone go because you loved them enough to make them happy, such as in The Longest Ride and they come back knowing it‘s not always going to be fun … or easy … chances are you found someone who will always love you.
On the other hand, if all they want to do is see if the grass is greener on the other side or need space so they can “think” about things, they probably aren‘t someone who will always love you through thick and thin.
Relationships aren‘t for the weak at heart; relationships take time to develop … a lot of time; relationships take communication — honest communication; relationships take trust — built on sometimes brutal honesty and love takes understanding — selfless rather than selfish understanding.
Many times all of these qualities take time to develop and come through realizing life is never like it‘s portrayed in movies or books, but sometimes, in a rare instance, it does happen between two people who fall in love — real love.
True love doesn’t come along often. In our lifetime we may be lucky if we actually meet our once-in-a-lifetime love — and if we do — we should always be ready to grab it, hold on to it and be able to “sacrifice, always,” no matter the cost.
Not everyone was born, nor raised, to be able to sacrifice to the point of being able to give up their big dreams for someone else, as in The Longest Ride, but when you have found someone who will … you could be in for the longest, most fulfilling ride of your life … one that lasts a lifetime.
Walking the road less traveled and hanging on to someone you truly love that doesn’t return your love can be a long, dark and lonely road; sometimes it means letting go and sacrificing your happiness for theirs.
Wherever you find your road less traveled, may you always find a way to shine.