As a woman, I have sat here day after day wondering when I might find my Prince/Princess Charming! I often make jokes that he/she got lost along the way or I tell myself it’s just not my time yet. I am 25-years-old and have thought that two individuals could have been the one for me but both relationships ended in disaster—heartbreaking disaster. The relationships I speak of have taught me what loyalty, love and devotion are not. Love is not asking someone to change or give up their well planned future. Loyalty is not keeping secrets from one another because it is just as bad as lying, although many think it is not. Devotion is the acceptance of your partner during their hardest times. I often ask myself if any of three exist anymore and I know most of you must, too.

Our younger generation has become obsessed with sexual appeal and does not take part in romance any longer. Long gone are the days of a love letter and a single red rose left on the bed. Today we see simple words of affection on a cellular phone screen and not always are they words; we often see acronyms now as if writing “I love you” is too difficult. As a society, we need to take a step back and learn from our historical past; we must remember the love letters we read as young adults in school that belonged to lovers years ago. We must remember the days when families and couples survived turmoil together and never gave up on the lighter side of love. We must remember that love is not easy and comes with many struggles; no one love is perfect.

If you want to find devotion in its entirety, you must be willing to give it, you must be patient, you must be willing to receive and give romance. When your partner gives you flowers or chocolate on a rare occasion, stop accusing them of cheating or hiding something. And if your partner surprises you with your favorite dinner or movie, be sweet to them afterwards by giving them kisses in places other than their lips or cuddle them. The smallest gestures show love and devotion; we always wait for the small things. Devotion is not a grand gesture at all, it is how often we realize the little things and appreciate them enough to stay by our partner’s side no matter the situation.

Romeo and Juliet seems to be a common favorite when it comes to “love stories” but what we fail to see is that it was not a love story at all. It was a story of fickle teenagers that did not want to overcome obstacles with patience; they wanted each other at that moment and when they could not, they became foolish. True devotion will not be foolish, true devotion will show patience and love. The movie I choose as a genuine example of devotion is Gone With The Wind; I know many are asking why already. In Gone With The Wind, we see Rhett continuously wait and long for Scarlett. Even as Scarlett continues to marry others and then makes mistake after mistake in their own marriage much later, he does not ever show a waiver in his devotion for her. It is not until the very end of the movie that she realizes this and chooses to go after him.
scarlett-rhett-devotionWhen you find an individual like Rhett, keep them as closely to you as possible and love them; truly love them as they are meant to be. Scarlett is my prime example of our younger generation today; she was always looking elsewhere and never seeing what she could have had with the one person who offered her true devotion. I have had my share of Scarletts and I must tell you, it hurts and causes us who want true devotion to become cynical and broken. Readers, always remember that last sentence when in any relationship because it is very important to understand why the next person you choose to be with may be cynical or broken as I mentioned; this is the prime example of when patience is key. If you give your devotion to a broken individual, you cannot blame them or yourself. You must have patience for trust to be built; it cannot always be given automatically.

Cassandra Jackson lives in Rio Rancho, New Mexico.

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