Love Stories: Everything But A Ring

She gave up on love a long time ago, that much I know.

Before, when she thought she was in love, she would come to me and tell me about the new man in her life. She told me time and time again that this would be the man who would take her away, the man who would do everything to make her happy. I only listened. Her eyes would sparkle with every word, and her cheeks would blush with every positive thought, every chunk of her imagination that now seemed within reach. She would giggle and tell me that she would not forget about me. Then, just weeks later, she would be packing her bags, and she would be off to some exotic destination.

But then she always came back crying, and she came back with less enthusiasm than what she had whenever she left. This is it, she would tell me. This is the last time. But then she would find someone again who would eventually leave her.

I’ve wondered why so many times. There was nothing wrong with her in my opinion - she had a beauty that shined more when you stared at her longer. She had a good, innocent heart, very childlike and yet containing a deep sense of maturity as well. She was charming and could sweep anyone off their feet without exerting much effort. But somehow, she keeps on falling in love with the wrong men.

They were all the same, the men she fell in love with. They were willing to give her the world, and being a young woman, what else could be more romantic? They bought her everything she asked for, and she pleased them. Yet they would end up leaving her in the end, either because they have already had their fun or because their wives found out about her.

She would always come back looking much older than she was when she left. But though she may be shedding tears and nursing fears, inside these things only made her stronger. She would go back to the world a rejuvenated person with new hope in her. Then the same thing would happen, and once again, she would close her heart off from the rest of the world.

The last time she returned, she told me she had given up on love already. She was tired, she said. The last man had done enough damage to her to last for a lifetime. That was what she told me. Indeed he had changed her life drastically. He was a single man who only wanted companionship, and she, being the innocent lady that she is, had mistaken this desire for companionship for love and passion. Indeed the passion led to their pleasure, and he left her with child. When he found out, he told her that he was willing to support her and their child, and he was willing to give anything that she asked for as long as she does not ask him to marry her. He told her he only wanted companionship, and he was not ready to settle down. When she heard this, it served as the last straw for her, and so she came home and told everyone that she was giving up on love.

Now there was a man who was constantly at her side whenever she would get her heart broken. He would always let her cry on his shoulder and tell her that things would be fine. He even offered to take responsibility for the child that she bore from the last failed relationship. For some reason that I do not know, she would not do as much as consider having this man in her life. I had dared ask her only once, and she just shrugged her shoulders in confusion and bewilderment. Maybe it was because she was still jaded when I asked, but I will never know. Anyway, he was always there, and one day he presented her with the one thing that she had always wanted - a ring.

“If you’re doing that because you feel sorry for me, then just forget it,” was what she answered. She let him go thinking he did not deserve her. But he refused to marry because he was waiting for her. Years later she would take him for his husband and live in utter bliss.

She gave up on love a long time ago. But then love had different plans. Love would not give up on her, and in the end it was worth the long wait.