From a very young age children are taught and exposed to love; what it means to be in love and how to identify it, therefore expectations develop based on these early experiences. From culture to culture there may be different signs of love and ways that love is expressed however, the feeling of love is a global, human emotion that everyone is capable of. The real question is, how is love developed, sustained, and how does it affect us in such a variety of diverse ways? Love is powerful, inexplicable, timeless, and different for every person however, it is a connection unlike any other and changes people like no other thing can. The Notebook, by Nicholas Sparks exhibits love as the passionate, unpredictable, indescribable feeling that it is, and even for those who haven’t been in love yet, a certain understanding is obtained by reading this novel. The story starts with two teenagers, Allie and Noah, who come from completely different backgrounds. They live, think, and act differently however in spite of all this they find each other and form a bond that can only be described as love. The beauty and mystery of love is that it can come from anywhere, at anytime and when it does it evokes such a variety of emotions that you do not initially realize what you are feeling. Nicholas Sparks uses Noah as a vehicle to describe this powerful feeling, “The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds.” Love is unpredictable and can take you at any time, and when it does it’s such an amazing, overwhelming feeling. The power of love in turn causes logic to take a back seat in decision-making. A desire to do and be whatever you can for your loved one overtakes you. Noah displays this with Allie, “I'll be anything you want, just tell me what you want and I'll be that.” He is willing to do anything for her and their love. It has become all that is important because it is the best thing in his life. He wants to protect and nurture the love they have so that it can prosper and last. There is no denial of the strength and natural magnetism of love however, outside forces can alter its existence. In the case of Allie and Noah they had family, socio-economical class differences, and time working against them. Allie’s parents strongly disapproved of Noah and believed that Allie in all aspects would be better off without him. This disapproval spawned from Noah and Allie’s class differences. Allie was wealthy and part of the elite social class while Noah was a poor working-class man. However, what eventually affected them the most was time. Allie and Noah lost sight of each other’s existence because Allie was headed off to school, Noah joined the army, and Allie’s mother blocked their only form of communication, letters. From the time that Allie and Noah were apart both still thought about each other. For Noah it seemed constant and he described, “Holding her in [his] arms was more natural to [him] than [his] own heartbeat. [He thinks] about her all the time. Even when [he sits there], [he thinks] about her. There could never have been another.” Seven years from the time they first started their relationship and split apart, they find each other again. Nevertheless, Allie is engaged to another man and Noah is still working at home. Allie goes to visit Noah when she sees him in a newspaper article. When they see each other again it seems as though nothing has changed. Their chemistry was undeniable and can only be seen as timeless. Love is so powerful and becomes so natural that time cannot affect it as easily as it does other relationships. Time cannot erase the memories, the feelings, and the passion that is felt between two people in love. The timelessness of true love still faces challenges. After Allie and Noah rekindle their love Allie is faced with a huge decision; go back to Noah or marry her fiancé. She must decide what she truly wants or thinks is best. Noah has always been fully Allie’s and tries to express that no matter what difficulties may come their way, “So it's not gonna be easy. It's going to be really hard; we're gonna have to work at this everyday, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, everyday. You and me... everyday.” Just because two people are in love does not mean they are exempt from challenges. From the beginning Allie’s family’s disapproval, and the timing of their situation made their relationship harder. However, they found their way back to each other and even though it will take patience, time and work that will only make their love stronger. Love is a complicated, multidimensional feeling that affects people in a variety of ways. There is a powerful, unpredictable essence to love that makes it feel like a natural part of a person’s being. This in turn can make them loose inhibitions and logic in order to sustain the relationship. Although, love is a strong connection it is not exempt from challenges. For Allie and Noah time was their worst enemy. However, though time might make a relationship break, the passion cannot be forgotten or erased. Love is timeless, and it’s no wonder that it changes people’s lives forever.
Sparks, Nicholas. The Notebook. New York: Warner Vision, 1998. Print.
The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
* Powerful/Unpredictable – gives an overwhelming, natural feeling that overtakes you * Inexplicable – decisions are made without logic
* Timeless/Passionate – Allie and Noah find each other again, they always have each other even when they are over * Challenges – takes patience, time, and work
“Poets often describe love as an emotion that we can't control, one that overwhelms logic and common sense. That's what it was like for me. I didn't plan on falling in love with you, and I doubt if you planned on falling in love with me. But once we met, it was clear that neither of us could control what was happening to us. We fell in love, despite our differences, and once we did, something rare and beautiful was created. For me, love like that has happened only once, and that's why every minute we spent together has been seared in my memory. I'll never forget a single moment of it.”
* Powerful/Unpredictable – “The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds.” * Inexplicable – “I'll be anything you want, just tell me what you want and I'll be that” * Timeless/Passionate – “She was my dream. She made me who I am, and holding her in my arms was more natural to me than my own heartbeat. I think about her all the time. Even now, when I'm sitting here, I think about her. There could never have been another.” * Challenges – “So it's not gonna be easy. It's going to be really hard; we're gonna have to work at this everyday, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, everyday. You and me... everyday.”