Let’s not make a list of what we have given up. We are all aware of how life is different. But there is one energy that I never thought would be more abundant now. It is intimacy. How can I say that with all of the physical distance and unnatural separation?
From talking with friends and family I have noticed that many people are reaching out to those from the past whom we have lost contact with – old friends, distant cousins, long-ago colleagues. We are more focused, present and interested in each other. What have you been doing? What is your life like now? How have your dreams changed? It seems that without the pressure to get the next thing done we are spending more valuable time “together”. Our voices have relaxed and maybe, just maybe, we are getting closer to our original and unique essences which allows us to seek out connection with others’ essences. We are feeling the value of fewer distractions, less hurried time and greater appreciation of each other. There is something innately satisfying in intimacy.
Two months ago a classmate asked if he could leave some boxes in my garage for a few months while he moved out of his apartment. Reluctantly I said yes, even though I really didn’t want to store someone else’s possessions. I value my space and the calm environment that I have created. But I acquiesced. When he came over and neatly packed his boxes on top of each other, he remarked that one box was particularly special because it contained the props for his tea ceremonies. I never knew that he ran tea ceremonies. His eyes lit up and he said that when he returned he would do a ceremony for me. Then came his most prized possession – a guitar that he made by hand over the course of a year. He crafted every single part of it – cut, sanded, varnished. It glistened like a freshly polished diamond. He gingerly took it out of its case and, as we sat on the floor of the garage, he strummed the most beautiful melody and sang from his heart. I was awe-struck. I have seen him in class over the years, but never really stopped to learn anything about him.
And how about the time that my granddaughter and I spend reading the same book, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, online? We get special quiet time alone to read and discuss whatever comes up. We never got that time when we were living our busy lives. Without rushing to appointments, classes and meetings for me and soccer games, homework projects and piano lessons for her we can enjoy each other’s company even though we are physically separated. I am spending less time preparing for what’s next and more deeply enjoying the time that I am with her.
How about you? Are you finding unexpected closeness in some relationships?