Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Eternal Optomist

People who seem to know, say that it's all about people - specifically, that it's all about the people you love.

I've built a life around a particular notion of spiritual service, of helping and making a difference, but never getting stuck on any one person in particular, never connecting more with the person you're helping than connecting with G*d, which is how you're able to help people to begin with.

Which means that for me, I have kept a good distance from people, never allowing any kind of real intimacy or trust to form, always waiting for any connection to reach its end, to break and not be bothered by it.  No tears, no regrets, no long good-byes. 

I don't really know how to move from that distant perspective to up close and personal, from detached to engaged, from objective to caring, from helpful to loving. 

I have considered my cool detachment one of my greatest virtues, a talent honed and crafted over many years, letting others be fully themselves with no need for me or them to shape our lives around each other. 

And maybe there is virtue in it.  Attachment causes endless sorrow as well, so it's not that I aspire to it instead.

But I can be cruel without meaning to be so.  I have little tolerance for human weakness, for human anything really, and I'm always hoping that people will live up to my highest expectations, even when I'm completely incapable of doing the same.

I cannot bear the ordinary failures of daily life, even when I'm the one doing the failing.  And I'm not really sure how to get beyond that.  I feel like someone needs to show me light and easy and fun, but I don't think I've been all that receptive. 

Get too close, and I violate every rule of improv, with tons of "no's" and "buts" and everything else that stops communication and connection.  "Yes, and" requires so much trust and openness, so this is what I'm working on. 

Not nearly as gracefully as I would hope, and with little of the same confidence that I do most anything else.  But I am working on it.  Even if it doesn't look like it.  I promise.

1 comment:

Wanderlust said...

Yeah, I get it. I think I would place myself a little further towards the intimacy end of the spectrum, but not much. So I get it. And who the hell thought it was such a good idea to spend a lifetime descending into that screaming pit of human emotional attachment. Oh, that would be us maybe. &^%$#!