Friday, May 16, 2008

Nunc Scio Quid Sit Amor

roses in our garden which usually start blooming in May

You are not at all like my rose," he said. "As yet you are nothing. No one has tamed you, and you have tamed no one. You are like my fox when I first knew him. He was only a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But I have made him my friend, and now he is unique in all the world."

And the roses were very much embarrassed. "You are beautiful, but you are empty," he went on. "One could not die for you. To be sure, an ordinary passerby would think that my rose looked just like you--the rose that belongs to me. But in herself alone she is more important than all the hundreds of you other roses: because it is she that I have watered; because it is she that I have put under the glass globe; because it is she that I have sheltered behind the screen; because it is for her that I have killed the caterpillars (except the two or three that we saved to become butterflies); because it is she that I have listened to, when she grumbled, or boasted, or ever sometimes when she said nothing.

-The Little Prince by Antoine de St-Exupery, Chapter 21
Translated from the French by Katherine Woods

This is one of my favorite excerpts from The Little Prince.I firmly believe what the little prince said about his rose is true. It is unique or has become unique because of the time he spent with it --- just like with our loved ones.Of course, as individuals, there's something that differentiate us from the others, that can prompt us to say "I am I; and you are you" . But we can only see their true "uniqueness" after being with them for some time. At the start, they might just be one of the many “chapters” in our life. And then, as we turn the pages, we realize that they’re not just a footnote or an appendix but rather the subject, without which, our book is just a collection of anecdotes and random topics; “thesis statement” that gives direction and flow to our discourse; the pivot point by which our life is hinged upon.

I am not saying that an instant "click", that magical moment when all of a sudden everything falls into its proper places when we meet our significant other for the first time, could not happen. It could and it's wonderful. However, somewhere along the course of the relationship, there would be moments of doubt, of comparing, of finding if we measure up to each other’s so-called ideals – “maybe I’m not good enough for him”, “maybe he’s not good enough for me”, “maybe it would be better if…”, etc. If we don't go through this phase, well and good. If it does happen, what is important is that after all these comparing, weighing, deliberating, we learn to appreciate and find that the person we are with is unique... not only because they possess something that stands out, but also because of the time we spent with them. Those important and not-so-important moments we’ve shared with them put us in a certain position to evaluate and realize that those moments are priceless BECAUSE of them. The instances when we put up with each other’s idiosyncrasies or support one another’s dreams, the times we shared a laughter or a tear, the occasions when we hit rock bottom or are up in the clouds in high spirits with our significant other by our side… these are the things that make them all the more dear to us --- unique, incomparable, irreplaceable.

They say love is blind. Maybe it is so, because even if other people say “oh, he’s not that great” or ‘she’s not really exceptional’, we still stay with them. I don’t think true love is blind to our faults. I think it is “blind” because even if there are others who seem to be a lot smarter, wittier, far "better" than our significant other, we choose and decide to stay with them. The time we spent “taming” them had made them more beautiful, in all the sense of the word, in our eyes. They might seem ordinary to others, but they are special to us. Their spirit might get lost in the vast ocean of personalities and faces, yet, for us, they still stand out. They might be invisible and inconsequential to the rest of the world but not to us, NEVER to us. They are “The One” that gives color, depth, meaning to our lives. And even if we search high and low, nobody else can take their place. We have found the beauty of their soul which makes them unique in the entire world, in the entire universe if you want. And we learn to ascertain this because of the time spent together, of being really with them ---physically and emotionally.

So to my dearest, on this special day, I’d like to say you are to me, like the rose is to the little prince --- unique, beautiful, worth giving up the things I hold dear. For it is with you I have taken roots. It is you who have sheltered me from the dark side of myself. It is through you that I learn how to fly with you as the wind beneath my wings.

nunc scio quid sit amor... now I know what love is...

(Thanks to my philosophy and theology teachers for planting the seed of wisdom about love, to my parents for showing me a concrete example, and to my husband for allowing the seed to grow so I can fully understand, experience and savor its fruits.)


Wendy Lopez-Redaon said...

I have friends I've known for such a long time. We've had misunderstandings and such but we still find ourselves together! My life will never be the same w/o them.

I remember reading the Little Prince way way back. such a profound and meaningful story =)

btw, thanks for the tag, i'll do it within this week =) see you around Lareine and God bless =)

lareine said...

hi wendy! i hope everything is going well with your pregnancy... yep, the little prince is really a wonderful story --- i never get tired of reading it... the way it was told is so child-like and yet full of thought-provoking phrases...

have a blessed weekend... and take care too, especially with little nigel :)

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