Sometimes I wonder about us English Majors. As kids, many of us liked stories: we liked reading sings and wading in imagery and language and being overtaken. We stood by as the plot unfolded before us.
Is it possible that we do the same thing in relationships? I tend to approach situations like they’re texts: I look for signs; I overanalyze. I’m so afraid of being alone that I become secondary. I’m on the outside looking in, uninvolved in the story when I want to be a main character. And in all the fantasy of what could be, I lose myself—and that’s not attractive. I take on her loves, her hates, her passions. Do I depend on other’s stories for my own happiness?
As literary critics, though, we can’t just take a passive role. We read closely — we read actively. It is our own experiences and social contexts and opinions that shape the significances of a text to us. It’s the same in relationships; no matter if we’re alone, or who we’re with, we’re still us. We have to be content in ourselves as people if we’re ever going to get understanding or satisfaction from any relationship. We have to write our own stories.