It’s when our minds are off of our minds when some of our deepest thinking comes to us. Some of it welcome, and some of it not. Some thoughts sneaking in like unwanted visitors in the night, clumsily moving through the darkness, not caring if they wake us or not. I was driving my daughter to daycare today and had a thought that erupted as if from someone else’s mind and it was that I really didn’t know many of the people that were in my life and important to me for this reason or that very well. Sure, we knew one another in ways that mattered at the time, common friends, common likes, a common attraction, or just a common place that tied us to one another. So many of them though I didn’t know more than those areas. Even the ones I knew pretty well.
I can think of someone in particular, someone who I shared an ex with and who I became friends with based on a common arts group we were a part of and a weird sense of humor we both had. It was a mostly good friendship until the end and then it died and it’s a memory.
The strange thing of it is that I can’t even think of what sort of music he liked.
We rode together in his van a few times and I recall him having some sort of MP3 player or something hooked up and it was essentially alternative music but beyond that I have no idea.
And he I knew pretty well.
And then you get into the weeds of the people I didn’t know for as long or in the same way.
I recall a date I had once, the WORST DATE I HAVE EVER BEEN ON as I declared to her as I was taking her home, and how awkward it all was. I met her online and she seemed nice and we went to a local bar that has food in Flint and we sat and I started asking her about herself. Immediately – I hate this music (it was bland classic rock) – and she didn’t like the place, and she did NOT like me asking her questions. For me, I thought I was aces. I took her to a low key place that is comfortable and dark and local to us both. And then I started to ask her about herself, the general banalities of what do you do for fun, what movies do you like, blah, blah, blah. The sort of stuff you do on a first date, ya know? It is what it is, it was what it was. I have had another bad date, and an awkward one, and others scattered in between, it’s not about that but about how hard it was to try to get to know her. This girl that I could have potentially dated. And I am sure she sparked with someone else, or other people, in various ways, we were just not going to match.
So we humans don’t make it easy to GET to know us.
We set traps and have walls in place and make it so darn hard to try to connect with one another because of past trauma and past drama that we end up on islands, together but apart.
How many of us were emotionally intimate with people we barely knew?
Sure, we knew them and were close but did we know who their friends were? Did we know their childhood dreams? Did we know their fears?
It’s strange how close we can get to someone, romantically or as friends, or whatever, only to still have them be strangers.
There are a LOT of people that are that way for me, and I am that way for them.
On my end it’s intentional.
I prefer to keep myself to myself as much as I am able. It’s lonely at times but I prefer that to the pain I have had in losing people who got deeper than I was comfortable with.
It’s sad though, just the same, that even some of my oldest friends have mysteries that I’ll never know.
Or is it?
Sure, I have to admit that I do regret not trying to get to know some of the people in my past, whoever they were, better. The thing is though that relationships and friendships have a natural ebb and flow to them. Some last, some don’t. Some pull you deeper in, some repel you. And frankly, some things we aren’t meant to know. They don’t have to be deep, dark secrets, these are just things that aren’t ‘important’ to everyone. They are things that you just don’t get.
And it’s weird, isn’t it, to think that that’s a thing.
But it is.
Just like the fact that our friends have friends we may never meet.
They are people outside of our friendship.
Even those closest to us have lives we are never going to be a part of, the lives they share with friends and family, and that’s good.
We don’t need to be the center of the universe, we need to share it together, and to appreciate that it will always hold mysteries, just as we all do.
It’s good to want to know more.
It’s good to want to connect more.
The thing though is that you can’t push it, you can’t force it, or you will get filtered truth.
You’ll get the company line the person tells everyone – oh, I love this – out of a feeling of guilt if they don’t give up something.
You won’t learn WHY they love that thing, that it was something that happened as a child that put the thing in their heart forever.
You can’t force people to reveal themselves to you.
To give you the pearls of their heart.
They have to do it because they want to and because the moment is right.
Maybe you’ll never get them from someone and maybe you will.
Whichever it is, it doesn’t make the connection you share or shared any less important or impactful. You shared the most important of connections and memories and that was of one another and shared moments.
You made your own pearls together.
So sure, it’s sad that we don’t always know one another as well as we may wish but we also don’t realize how impactful and important the connections we have are until they are gone.
“All right, then keep your secrets!”
I do a lot of stuff, hit the links to see what they are.