Books & Movies & Life

When it comes to books being made into movies, so often the latter doesn’t come close to doing the former justice. Sure, all the drama is there; but what about all the tiny pieces that make the story really come together? What about the pieces that make the story worth reading page after page?

Well, tonight I had the chance to really think about this and, as things go, I finally felt like I had something worth writing again. And, perhaps, an idea worth scrolling. But that’s for y’all to decide.

Tomorrow I’m waking up at 3 a.m. to travel to Greenwich, Connecticut for Cycle for Survival. The opportunity to work this event came out of the blue–and, considering the cause, at the perfect time. But that’s another story. The point is, since my alarm will be rousting me out of bed at an ungodly hour, there was really only one plan of action for my day leading into it–to (hopefully) sleep in (11:54 a.m. means it was a glorious success, btw) and to spend the day on an adventure–through the city, my heart and mind. Knowing that I had no desire to go out tonight paved the perfect opportunity to get lost in the mundane while giving it the appreciation it deserves because sadly I–and most people for the matter–take life, it’s experiences and all it has to offer for granted.

After what felt like a day well spent spring cleaning, selling and donating clothes, walking through the Union Square farmer’s market and past the coffee shop Matt and I spontaneously decided to try; I decided I was going to lace up to take my first outdoor run in months in order to finish just in time to climb the bridge to watch the sunset from our spot. And it was up there, watching the sun start to sink behind the skyline that I once only dreamed of, while my finger blindly traced where our inscriptions used to be, that my heart started to feel simultaneously fuller than ever and more homesick than imaginable. It was in that moment, while my Rebelution playlist was switching between songs, that I carefully stood up with my arms slightly outstretched in order to maintain my balance so as not to fall–something I overcome fearing each and every time I go up there– that I knew it was a dessert for dinner and love story kind of evening.

So, now that you have a little background, lets get back to the idea of books and movies. I know I tend to wander in my thoughts, but I assure you–much like novels and films flipping between past and present–there’s always a reason, and although it may not make sense at first, it will always find a way for those with open minds, hearts and eyes.

As I got into bed with my piping hot chocolate soufflé (thank you Martha’s Country Bakery, you’ve outdone yourself)–I grabbed my Mac and began scrolling through Netflix. The first drama option was The Best of Me and, although it sounded familiar, it didn’t ring a bell apart from my being pretty sure it was an adaptation of a Nicholas Sparks book. As I waited for my Silverlight plugin to update so that I could get lost in a fictional romance, I grabbed my water from my nightstand only to catch a glimpse of one of my most prized possessions–a book that Matt gave me for Christmas; easily the most thoughtful present I’ve ever received. I like to keep it on my bedside table at all times because, although it didn’t even take a few days to devour, it’s a steady reminder that love–like we so often denounce to only being a figment of novels and films–can actually exist in real life.

And the book you may ask? The Best of Me.

I suppose I got so caught up in the story–both by Nicholas Sparks and what Matt added in the margins, ultimately giving it more meaning than anything else I own–that it was simple to forget the title. But, as soon as I realized that it was one in the same with the film I was waiting to load, once more I felt full and homesick all at once.

Like many things with Matt–and like I mentioned in my second post about him–although he’s the only person who has inspired me to write about a relationship while it’s budding and growing, I prefer to keep most of the precious pieces of us and our experiences to myself which means, much like books and films, what is shared with the vast majority is nothing in comparison to what actually unfolds. And it’s not just with Matt, but with my family, my move to New York that so many people doubted my ability to make it even six months (I’m at 11, thank you very much), my experiences–both past and present.

It’s easy to get caught up in life and take the role of a film adapter–someone who knows there’s an expansive story to be told but prefers to showcase bits and pieces. You see, it’s easy to pick the highlights–good or bad–and share them with the world. Whether it’s that selfie where you think you look flawless or venting to your friends about what’s not going right. And when you get caught up in this routine it’s easy to forget that you’re a novelist–someone producing sentence after sentence, chapter after chapter. That’s not to say you can’t keep things to yourself, it’s just a reminder to not forget to consider the little things in life that truly make a difference; a reminder that there’s a lot going on and there are better things to do than get hung up on what doesn’t matter in the big scheme of things. As soon as you remember that, maybe, just maybe, you’ll begin to approach life a little differently–you’ll have a new appreciation–or perhaps you’ll just regain it. And before you know it, you’re fuller than ever and more homesick than imaginable all at once. At least I was.

You see, those who have read the book, truly taken the time to analyze the characters, the situational experiences, the underlying key concepts–well, those are the people who get it. They are the ones capable of thinking further into the plot, and, if you think about it, life. But those who don’t have the patience or the opportunity to discern every letter that goes into crafting a novel–the people who only absorb the blips that are comfortable and easily consumed? Well, they may just never understand.

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