Today has to be the happiest day in my life. The below zero temperature outside with breezing snow is so contrary to my present mood- so bright, brimming with happiness as warm as summer sunshine. Today I shall reveal my feelings to him. Now or never, I decide. For how long do I hesitate fearing his reaction? I am sure he will respond positively. My gut intuition never lets me down. I can see it in his every gesture, the very way he looks at me longingly, speaks volumes about how much he adores me. But yes, I know he is shy to propose. Just like me. But I shall make things easier for us.
Fresh roses! Bright red! I stop near the florist and buy roses. Roses have so rightly been symbolic of budding love for long. The beauty of the petals standing for the splendour of charming love. The thorns standing for the difficulties one has to face through to succeed in love. I can smell the pervasive fragrance of love in the air. Yes today is the day! What is it with love? Everything feels so poetic and beautiful- like the white specks of falling snow dotted against the red backdrop of the rose.
After one whole year of silently and secretly admiring him, the secret can no longer be contained in my heart. Love just one thing? No, love is to show, to express, to spread, to feel, to reciprocate!
I invite him for dinner to my place. The flickering fire burning in the fireplace makes the room very warm and cosy. He catches the look of delight in my twinkling eyes. He feels the electricity in the air… expecting something that will prove to be the biggest moment of our lives.
What is it with love? Can you read each other’s minds? As if there’s an invisible bond connecting our hearts. Thinking alike and feeling in unison…
The roses wait to be given and to be received…to be held testimony of our love. Relaxing, on the sofa, by the fireplace and watching the fire dancing brightly he says, ‘Today is the best day in my life dear!’
How right I was that our love was a mutual feeling!
‘Yes! Mine too!’ I say
‘I am glad you feel happy for me.’
‘I feel happy for us’
‘I waited for one whole year. Never got this chance.’
‘What? One year? You too?’
‘And finally Rachael agreed to marry me!'
‘Oh? I am happy for you. Truly!’
‘She has made me a happy man! I will leave now. Thanks for the lovely dinner’
I see his silhouette fading away with the growing distance, and try hard to fight back my tears. He for even once doesn't glance back. Love just one thing? No it is to hide, to sacrifice, to conceal, to forgo, to hurt!
The flames in the fireplace dampen long after he leaves, but the ashes keep burning…just like my fiery hot tears that stream down my cheeks. I throw the rose out of the window into the harsh wintry snow. It lays there, ignored, frozen in the chill, and piled below the sheets of ice and snow.
Whom could I blame? I kept listening to whatever he didn't utter. Without any reason I weaved high hopes. I presumed his unvoiced feelings. I took his love to be granted, conjuring love out of thin air, when it really didn’t exist.
Weeks fly by. Seasons change. Nothing is temporary.
The ice melts and the first rays of spring sunshine streak through the dried, barren stems of the trees, and touch the ground. As the layers of snow disappear one-by-one, I see my rose wilted and withered ashen brown.