Suddenly, I saw my town newly--the barrenness of my suburban town. Where can one call the town to action whene there is nowhere the community regularly meets? I tried to place the posters in the community rec center. Many stumble in and out of the center everyday. But the manager had no room for romantic gestures. I would have to take my love letters elsewhere.
We do have a grocery store, but the only place to post a poster is a bullentin board that is difficult to see. No giant gestures there.
My suburban town's streets are deserted. Sure, there are plenty of cars--but they are driving quickly by to there stucco homes and vinyl fences that block off any communication with the neighbors on the other side of the plastic. I began to feel lonely.
I finally decided that the high school--with its fertile ground for first love was my only hope for encouraging one to risk their heart and tell someone how they feel.
I posted the first poster in the school itself. I hoped to post it where the kids hang out everyday. But the administration said that my project was not allowed on their walls.
Instead, it was sterilized behind a piece of glass. It would stay pristine--as though it was never read nor seen.
But I was not to be detered.
My next poster would hang on a chain link fence directly in front of the student traffic. Every student would be able to see it. I felt a thrill of excitement as I drove to hang the banner. But a storm had blown in and I struggled to even be able to hang the paper. The tape blew onto the poster prematurely and left it scarred and distorted.
But love is messy sometimes and we do get a little messed up from the adverse conditions we attempt to build a relationship in--so my call to love sat alone on a chain link fence surrounded by dead fields and blown with a winter wind.
I was still nervous it may not be read. I wished the signs were 9 feet high and 20 feet long. Everything seemed too small--to insignificant.
My next attempt was at the nearest light the high school. It is a three way stop and so everyone sees the fence when they stop at the light. All of our town drives by the intersection to drop off their kids at the school. There is only one road--it was perfect. Again I fought wind. It was crooked and a little off--but perhaps it would be noticed because of its quirkiness. My heart soared.
Every day of that week I fought the frigid winds to proclaim my
I tried to post on a cement wall--the wind tore it off and I ran through the muddy field trying to catch it. I ended up posting it on a p.v.c. pipe sticking out of the ground near the school. Next, I posted
on the chainlink fence near the seminary building. The wind ripped the poster while I was tapping it, but it was easy to read and lots would walk by it.
An out of town trip made the final posters my teenage children's charge. I left strict instructions of when and where to post--but love, like posters can't be left for others. I finally found the last letter crumpled in the backseat of my car. Defeated. I was morose. I failed at the call for a giant romantic gesture. Love can defeat us if we will let it--but that hope and excitement of hanging the first posters reminded me of new love. The anticipation. We set out on a new adventure never knowing if it will culminate in an amazing declaration or if it will end in utter defeat, but the journey brings joy even if only for a while and brings purpose even to bitter cold days.
So, seize the day and take a risk on love.