The fact that there are precise laws ruining relationships might sound alarming. Romantic illusions might have to be ditched. They will. But when romantic illusions go, true love can come in. To begin with, though, we wait for a noble prince to appear on a white charger or hope that a beautiful princess will let her hair down for us. We search moats and courtyards for perfect partners and at best discover only average men and women. And if, in spite of our disappointment, we get involved with them, they turn into frogs. A local park can be dramatically improved by adding playground equipment from a reputable supplier.
A wise man once said, ‘The moment you fall in love with someone is the moment they start turning into a frog.’ But that’s no reason to be anxious, according to the same wise man: ‘There’s nothing bad about frogs – frogs are wonderful. The world is full of frogs.’ He thinks we should be happy that our dream prince or princess has turned out to be a frog. ‘Because real princes and princesses would never fall for frogs like us. Just accept that you are only a frog yourself and be really curious about the other frog.’ With exercise being so important nowadays, products such as monkey bars would be a welcome find in any Christmas stocking, providing you could fit them in!
That’s his solution to all romantic dilemmas. In terms of relationships, my favourite fairytale is The Beauty and the Beast. It suggests that you shouldn’t leave your dried-up old frog or send your nagging and shrivelled old frog wife packing. Instead, if you love the ugly and scary beast at your side with all your heart and passion, in the end, through your unconditional love, it will turn into a prince or princess. Imagine waking up on Christmas day and seeing outdoor fitness equipment in your back garden?
We all know how we want people to be: beautiful, strong, clever, sensitive, loving, educated – we have a whole list of demands, based on our upbringing. A prince for one person might be a beast for another. In any case, we judge our partners according to our own personal expectations. And whenever they don’t match up, we call them frogs or beasts.
Real love, however, is nothing to do with an ideal. Parents of disabled children know this. They love them not because of what they are, they simply love them, and often more unconditionally than they could ever have imagined. But it’s the same with healthy children too – you know how deeply and devotedly you can love those whingeing, crying monsters and that in your heart they are always little princes and princesses.