Swept Away

So my Thursday nights are Scandal nights. For those of you living under a rock, Scandal is a drama starring Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope, a “fixer,” whose job (along with her associates) is to solve the problems of high profile people who need to keep their problems low profile. The show is fast paced, and smart, and scandalous. Anyway, the show is based in Washington DC and the most intriguing subplot by far is Olivia’s love affair with the President of the United States, Fitzgerald Grant. The two met when she worked on his campaign and it was love at first sight (not surprising for a TV couple). Also not surprising is the fact that the President is married, with children, and well… the President. So their love is fierce, and all-consuming, and totally impossible.

Now, as hard as the two of them try to resist one another, they often end up in contact. And that’s when things tend to get sticky. Because when they share the same space, they are instantly affected by one another- there’s no way to hide the way they feel. This is a great kudos to Kerry Washington and Tony Goldwyn (the actor who plays Fitzgerald “Fitz” Grant) by the way- you can definitely feel the chemistry. But back to the point…

Watching Olivia and Fitz made me think about being swept away, swept off my feet. I know that in my last post about cheating I made the point that TV couples are often “swept away” and this seems to make their cheating justified on some level- and Olivia and Fitz are a really perfect example of that. You know there’s no possible future for their love, and every kiss they share is wrong because he’s married, but you still root for them- you still hope that one day, their love will conquer their moral, professional, and political obligations. At least, I do. The idea that they are just totally swept away by one another gives their entire story a romantic edge- even though the reality is pretty unromantic.

Now, I also said in my last post that I have no idea if being “swept away” happens in real life- but I think I’m at a crossroads because there is a small part of me that wants to believe that it does. I know that a romance like theirs would be messy, and inconvenient, and probably even wrong from some moral standpoint, but wouldn’t it be worth it to have your breath taken away like that? To look into someone eyes and know that they are absolutely your other half? Would that be worth the pain? And if it was wrong to be with them, would that justify the wrong?

I’ve talked a bit about my romantic nature- how I was so free with it, got hurt using it, tried to kill it, and am subsequently trying to resurrect it. Anyway, that part of me has always been the dominant part of my personality (until recently). I’ve always fallen fast and fallen hard. I never had reservations- I took the plunge, every time. It’s just my way. When it comes to love, either I’m all in- or I’m not in. I was never afraid of letting it consume me- as a matter of fact, that was what I always wanted. TV couple love, Harlequin romance love, I wanted to look into someone’s eyes and get swept away. I never stopped to think about what would happen if I got swept away by someone that I technically couldn’t have.

Because I normally fall so hard, I won’t even sit on my moral high horse and act like I would stop myself. I mean, I would try to resist. But it might ring a little false… kinda like Olivia. I would tell him to stop calling- but I don’t think I would mean it. I can’t honestly say that I would care if he belonged to someone else. Not if I believed that he was meant for me. I know it sounds selfish… hell, I know it sounds like I don’t have any morals. And I know it doesn’t make any sense- because if he was meant for me, he wouldn’t be someone else’s. But I’m just trying to be honest. I think about the last man I loved, and how much I did to be with him. I think about that- and then I think that if I can do all of those things for an asshole who wasn’t even worth it, what would I do for the man who actually loved me back? Would I do anything? Would I risk anything? If I knew he felt what I felt, what would I take? How long would I wait? That’s why the “swept away” concept is scary as hell. Sometimes lust can take to places you never thought you’d be. That means love, real love, has the potential to make you do a thousand times more. At least that’s how I always saw it.

Then I wondered if it was all about hormones. Is it just the need for physical contact kicked into overdrive? It is loneliness multiplying? Is it lust amped up? The thrill of the forbidden? I wonder if it’s just me. Maybe years of reading and writing about women getting swept away makes me more susceptible to being consumed, fuzzes the line between right and wrong for me. Maybe I have the immature notion that love really does conquer all- even when the other person has a “situation.” Recently, I found myself taking a liking to a guy with other obligations. I berated myself constantly for putting myself in the position of getting caught up- but I’ll keep it real- he’s a good kisser, and I cared more about that. None of it is his fault- I told him that I was a big girl, who could handle myself- and I am- but I wondered why I walked down that road. Why I wanted it that bad. Hormones? Or something else?-

Either way, I would never want to be in Olivia Pope’s shoes. In tonight’s episode, Olivia’s friend the judge said, “You two even breathe in sync.” To look into the eyes of my other half and know he feels the same way would be my greatest pleasure- knowing he could never be mine would be my greatest pain. But the million dollar question- would it be enough pain to make me give him up? Because walking away would be more pain, right?

I’ve stayed up entirely too late thinking about this. I’m off to bed- more TV tomorrow…

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