Once again, for Valentines Day, SMITH magazine is sponsoring its Six Word Memoirs, the Annual Love and Heartbreak Show. It’s an idea inspired by writer Ernest Hemingway, who, when asked to write an entire story in only six words, responded: “For Sale: baby shoes, never worn.”
Readers are offering their six words on the magazine’s website, and in the Twitterverse, with the hashtag #sixwords. Among the witty, moving and sometimes tragic replies are these:
“Hired me. Fired me. Married me.”
“Someone should have objected at my wedding.”
“Much married; fourth time is charmed.”
After some thought, I’ve found my six very simple words: “He was so worth the wait.” I was in my forties when I met my husband. I’d been married and divorced, and had been in a number of relationships. None of them had been what I really wanted. I wanted someone smart and funny and kind, of course, but some of the men I’d known had been all of those things. I wanted more.
I was so tired of being on the outside, at the periphery of relationships. I wanted to be with a man who would make me the center of his universe, to whom I’d be the single most important person. I dreamed of being completely myself with a man, someone who would accept me unconditionally, with all my imperfections, and consider himself lucky to have me. I wanted a partner with whom I could share dreams and goals, and build a life and a family. Someone in it for the long haul. I wanted fun, laughter, companionship, tenderness, excellent sex, and deep, bedrock commitment.
I got it all.
Everyday I hear from women I know, and from men, as well, how lonely they are and how close they are to giving up on the hope of true love. I found love in midlife. Friends of mine have found love in their sixties and seventies. Yes, I know not everyone wants a partner, and life alone has its joys. But if, in your heart of hearts, you are longing for that great love, please listen to me. Don’t give up. Be patient. It is so worth the wait.
I love you.