I can only speak my point of view,
Because it's the only one I've lived.
I'm going to write much more personally today. (Sometimes I do, sometimes I generalize.) I'm feeling as if a part of me which was dormant for a while has come back to life.
The instigator of this... umm... awakening (?)... is nothing more, or less, than remnant thoughts dripping onto the page from weekend reflections on a long ride home last night. As I often do when I'm driving alone down a dark desert highway (cool wind in my hair), I reflect on where I've just been and what I may have learned while there.
More often than not it's goofy shit. (How many of you now have a Hotel California in the back of your head?)
If any of this post resonates with the reader, great. If not, that's okay too. It's my shit anyway.
For clarity's sake, I went to a wedding in Wisconsin this past weekend. I was asked a few times about the long drive for a single weekend. My answer was simple: it was Vicki. There are certain people I have connected with over my fifty-four years for whom, even if we haven't seen each other for some time, I will step up. In Vicki and Greg's case, I was honored to have been asked to attend their wedding in the first place and they are important enough to me to make the effort to be there. Some of the looks and comments I received were akin to, “Really? You drove all that way for a wedding and some kayaking? Weird.”
Personally, I find it weird when people don't put that kind of effort into friendships (in particular, chosen family).
Perhaps I'm a bit of an anomaly in a “what's in it for me” world.
I went to the wedding stag not knowing more than half a dozen people in a foreign country where the people I did know were going to be occupied for most of the event. They were getting married after all. Basically I was left to my own devices, which is perilous enough under normal circumstances.
I used to be a wallflower at these shindigs. If I didn't know anyone, I would hang back and watch the world go by. There's an old saying about sitting on your porch and the whole world will eventually pass by. While that may be true, my ass gets sore if I spend too much time sitting in one place. I'm not sure lethargy is a particularly noble life goal for me anyway. I would rather move than wait.
Fortune favours the brave.
Thanks to another group of kindred spirits, I changed my perspective. And, it didn't happen overnight. New trees (ideas, concepts and habits) are easy to remove. Old trees with roots deep in my past are much more difficult to dig out or avoid.
I learned how to move through a room by watching other people move through a room. I emulated some of things they did and ventured out in the thriving throng using their model. Some of it worked and some of it felt as alien to me as it would waking in some alternate reality. Then again, it was an alternate to my own reality. Eventually, I found my own rhythm and the dance became easier.
I am able to find only that with which I am familiar and, therefore, able to see.
It took me a long time to figure out this next bit and some of it came to me again over the course of the weekend. We need models. Not supermodels. I would deem neither the women nor the men they label as “models” a framework for reality. I'm not certain they're all that super either. I'm speaking of models of those things we seek. Until I see, feel, and touch something similar to that which I seek, and recognize it, I will never know the feeling of what I am looking for.
Why is feeling important? Because energy attracts similar energy and I emit and feel energy... like we all do.
It's how we feel like we're in the same relationship or the same job or the same neighbourhood even though we have moved on to something "new". We migrate toward that which is familiar (comfort zones). And what is familiar feels right even though it may not be right. That situation or person or job may not be what is good for us, yet it is what we attract because it is all we see through our filters. We get the same thing over and over because we see and feel the same things. It's difficult to do another dance when the song is always the same.
I generalized above yet I know I have fallen victim to those same pitfalls: wanting something different and not able to recognise it because I've not seen it before and, therefore, don't know what it looks or feels like. Until I experience the feeling of being in the company of those people, places or things, I won't know what I'm looking for.
It's the feeling I seek... not a person, place or thing.
It's how I can now move through a crowd of strangers and find kindred spirits. They suddenly appear by my side (or I by theirs) without any real effort. I know what I'm feeling for. (Yes... I know what I just said. It's a double entendre. Bite me.)
It's how I ended up spending time with Barbara, Tim and the two Petes. It's why I made the effort to attend Greg and Vicki's wedding. It's why I made a side trip to visit Han on the way home. Important people. Kindred spirits.
It was tough leaving Wisconsin. The people felt right... and a lot like I was home.
At the very least, I now know what I'm looking for.