When hearing stories about great loves it almost seems like a fairy tale. Everything appears to be magical. Kathy and Mark met in their mid twenties, dated for a week, got married, and two weeks ago celebrated their twenty-sixth wedding anniversary in Palm Springs. “After only one week, I asked her to marry me.” -Mark said. They experienced their forth date at the beach. Kathy turned around to look at the ocean as Mark was admiring her beauty. “At this moment I knew she was the love of my life.” Mark got down on one knee and asked for Kathy’s hand. Twenty-six years later I’m here in Palm Springs hearing the two reminisce the greatest moments of their marriage. Baffled by the fact any relationship could be so perfect I asked the couple, “What is the secrete to a long lasting relationship?” Kathy and Mark were holding each other’s hands turned and looked each other in the eyes, smiled, then gave me this response, “compromise and understanding.” It seems simple enough. Any diplomatic action can be resolved with those characteristics at the foundation.
Unfortunately not everyone is a Mark and Kathy. Not all great love stories end like this fairy tale. What Kathy and Mark have is truly special. Knowing this is important. However, hearing all these glorious tales make not-so-glorious relationships last longer than they should, in hopes that they are a Mark and Kathy. Smoke in mirrors creating an illusion of happiness only to result in a tragedy. The one thing love doesn’t have is a warning label. “Warning: the emotions you are about to engage in will cause moments of euphoria but when taken away have the severe and at times fatal side effects.” And when in disbelief of this warning you can refer to any of love’s fallen warriors: Marilyn Monroe, Judy Garland, and Vincent van Gogh.
The woman who had everything or so it perceived to be. The body of a goddess and the fame envied by all. Miss Monroe captured the hearts of any man who ever saw her, athletes and the president. Even with everything she felt as though she had nothing. This controversial death took place in a time when Marilyn’s love life seemed to continue to go unfulfilled. “I have to many fantasies to become a housewife. I guess I am a fantasy.” -Marilyn Monroe… A fantasy held by a woman every girl fantasies to be.
We were all young once sitting in the living room watching Judy Garland go from a sophia toned screen to colored images in a land that was “somewhere over the rainbow.” “As for my feelings toward ‘Over the Rainbow,’ it’s become part of my life. It is so symbolic of all my dreams and wishes that I’m sure that’s why people sometimes get tears in their eyes when they hear it.” -Judy Garland. Three months after marrying her fifth husband, Mickey Deans, Garland was found dead from a drug overdose. This tragedy occurred in the 1960’s but her personal troubles began in the early 1940’s after her marriage David Rose ended in 1944.
Known for falling in love with vulnerable women in hopes that he would be their knight in shinning armor, Vincent van Gogh went to all the extremes to express and maintain his passionate feelings for the love of his life. He was a intrigued with concept of love, famously quoted saying, “Love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is done well.” Van Gogh is another tragic love story, not quiet fantasy, resulting in the amputation of his ear and attempted suicide.
Love can bring you down just as quickly as it can pick you up. Love is the blood diamond of emotions, beautiful and worth so much but at times dangerously sought after and maintained. The fallen warriors of love are examples of this tragic emotion. Kathy and Mark are an example of its beauty. When seeking love think of its beauty but do not forget its darkness.
“Judy Garland, 47, Found Dead.” New York Times. 23 June 1969. http://www.nytimes.com/books/00/04/09/specials/garland-obit.html
“Vincent van Gogh Biography.” bio True Story. http://www.biography.com/people/vincent-van-gogh-9515695
“Marilyn Monroe.” Good Reads. http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/82952.Marilyn_Monroe