Then, the page turns and we wake the hell up. We discover there is joy in not having to share the remote. That once you find a decent handyman, there's no waiting for the air conditioning filter to be changed ever again. They don't tell you that girlfriends rule or that work won't break your heart. They don't tell you that something is not better than nothing and that there is pride in knowing that you don't "need no stinkin' man."
But what they really don't tell you about finding love again is this: that even when your fantasies are shot to hell, it's worth it to get back in the game. Love no longer becomes about a four-karat rock or having someone with whom to share carpool duties. Love is about loving who you are and not being in love with who he might become.
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Love the second time around is knowing that love isn't easy and that he will never be perfect, even with open communication and a shrink who says "you're right" every other Wednesday at 7 p.m. They don't tell you that sometimes you go to bed mad because you just are. That when the dawn settles, eyes half-lidded and your breath stale, you still scooch your in close to his warm belly, because whatever he did that made your blood boil last night isn't that important because his warm body is wrapped around yours now and it feels good. He is your Edward and you his Bella … even though you don't have super powers or super abs.
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What they don't tell you is that maybe your fantasies aren't actually shot to hell at all, but rather the actors and actresses — the heroes and heroines — have been replaced and that the plot has been rewritten. That the boy has turned into a man. The girl has grown into a woman. The real story is the experience of love itself and that the destination is finally, at last, deliciously unimportant.