What makes someone a good communicator to you? Is it talking every day for a few minutes? Texting or video chat? Face to face meetings?
In person interactions are almost a thing of the past right now. This pandemic has put us all in a quandary or at least I feel at times it’s that way.
You lose touch with the simplicity of every day life. I miss the hugs, the touch on the shoulder, the high five and fist bump. I miss the reaching out to touch someone and the kiss on the cheek from a patient ,child or a loved one. I have to think all day about restraining myself from touching. Never truly realizing how much I valued this part of intimacy with others, until it is lacking.
I Realize others miss this too. As a woman especially, It’s amazing how many previous love interests are stomping at our door. People want a “quarantine partner”, a “quarantine buddy”. A temporary bandaid to an internal fight with being alone. Sure I’ve applied a bandage to help me “get by” so to speak. But that doesn’t help me personally in the long run.
Being alone. It’s scary, it’s real, and it’s a situation we will encounter. It’s just that all too often we mask the alone time with ourselves by staying busy. When the world shuts down and everything closes we can’t do all the things we normally would. We can’t fill those empty voids. Filling these holes with restaurants, bars , the theater and all sorts of recreation. We are now left to our own devices. And we are faced with reality. A reality of ourselves, and how well we hold up. How well we hold up when we don’t have have all the extra support beams we so unknowingly looked over.
I get lonely, sure. But I don’t allow myself to stay in this bitter state. This state where you lay in bed and realize your dog and your pillow is the closest thing to a warm body. Nothing against my dog, he’s really my child and I love him dearly. And my pillow, well it’s a glorious pillow, the best I ever invested in. But is it a human? Not even close. I miss the smell of someone I love next to me and their skin. Their touch, laying my head on their chest and listening to the heartbeats. One by one, as mine syncs with theirs. I long for the comfort of being in someone’s arms that loves me just as much as I love them if not more.
Stopping to wonder, did I ever really truly have that? I’ve had it a few times. Where I felt I was in a blissful state. Laying next to the one I cared for and loved. That moment is so fleeting. And once you have had it once or twice, you know it can be found again. God, I sure hope so.
But it was fleeting right? It was a temporary state. It lasted and then it ended. For whatever reason. That person was unfaithful and broke my trust. Or maybe he couldn’t fill my emotional needs. Maybe I finally learned he was disrespectful and I deserved a hell of a lot better. Or he was absolutely lovely in my eyes, but lived too far away to make the damn thing work. Perhaps the timing of it all wasn’t optimal for us both. It’s possible he just couldn’t commit to what I needed, and I realize now that’s ok.
Whatever the reason, it ended. I ended it, or he ended it. Maybe it ended before it actually became a real something. But we sure got a good taste of what it could have been. And it ended, because everything happens as it should in my option.
And then I contemplate that being alone and being lonely are two different beasts.
So where do we go from here?
In this world where everyone wants to communicate via text and snap chat filters. Non stop selfies and fewer conversations. Do you have to stoop to that level of communication if you don’t prefer it?
What happened to good old fashioned meeting in person? Coffee dates and walks in the park. Letters to loved ones and kind gestures.
I’ll tell your One thing I learned last year. In no way do you have to do anything in your relationships you aren’t comfortable with doing. Believe it or not there are no rules with dating and even more so during a quarantine.
What I keep going back to though. Are my interactions with friends and possible love interests favorable to my well being? How do they leave me feeling? Am I uplifted by someone’s presence, or is there lack in flow. I think that sometimes we are so scared of letting some ties go. So scared of losing what we have (even if it isn’t what we want or need long term) and not knowing what else is out there.
I’d rather have 5 reliable, honest and loving friends than 200 acquaintances that are like fall leaves blowing by. Leaves come and go with the seasons. Don’t get me wrong, I love fall. And I absolutely relish in the smell and quality they bring to autumn. They are beautiful and have a nice quality about them. But I’d much rather a simple green plant in my windowsill that is alive all year. A few times a year it blossoms and you see it in a beautiful new way. Seeing it’s new colors, appreciating it even more. Because it is constant and something you can count on.
That’s what I value, pandemic or not. Consistency.