Monday, April 13, 2015

Monday Mantra: The Distance our Devotion Travels

mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that is considered capable of "creating transformation".

Every Monday I will post a new thought, idea, or focus for the week. When you need a breather from life, when you need a little inspiration, or when you're about to jump over the conference table and strangle your co-worker, remember the mantra.

Monday Mantra: Pay attention to where your love goes...and why

I've been thinking about this one for a while. How far our feelings for someone go - whether in true distance that can be measured or in actions, in thoughts, in pain.

Example 1: My grandmother, my gramma, my guide and my compass. Words do not adequately express the absolute soul shattering pain one has, and must endure for the rest of their lives, when someone they love dies. It is incomparable. It is sudden bursts of sadness for absolutely no reason. It is tears being shed on the loveliest of days when everything has gone right. It is when a single moment, a single memory, creeps into your mind and undoes you. It's having not cried, not thought, not even considered the person who has gone, and then suddenly, because you saw/heard/watched something that reminded you of your person, if only by a fraction, you are biting your lip so as not to cry in public, at a meeting, in a yoga class, at the grocery store. It is me sitting here right now crying because I thought about my gramma today, over and over and over.

I know, at least in this human life, I will never see her again. Never talk to her, never laugh with her, never be able to tell her how much I love her. In her place - in the place of her hugs and her love and her, just her - is pain. All of my hoping and wishing and wanting will not bring her back or somehow make us closer to each other when we are now so far apart. We are separated by - I don't even know what to call it - breath, air, space? Expanses that cannot be measured or quantified, yet my devotion to her is unfaltering. 

Example 2: Friendship. I have friends that live thousands of miles away and friends that live in the same town. I have best friends and close friends and friends that are more like family to me than anything else. My friends sometimes fail in our relationship, and I sometimes fail them. For instance, years ago one of my best friends moved  far, far, far away. We would call and write letters to each other, however, in all humbleness and embarrassment, I admit that I was (and probably still am sometimes) a horrible long distance friend. 

I've thought about this a lot- why I'm so bad at it. I've come up with several reasons specific to this case, but in general the problem (my problem) is that I'm far too much of a visual person, in the sense that I truly need to see them in some way, shape, or form. So as much as I love/hate social media, it's helped with this tremendously. When I finally stopped being an idiot, we reconnected as if nothing had ever changed. I can genuinely admit that across the years when our friendship was lacking, I still thought of this person as a best friend, one of the best of the best. I still loved and cared for them. My devotion to them did not fail, even though we were thousands of miles apart, but my participation in the relationship did. 

Example 3: Significant others turned ex-significant others. This fascinates me because it's the most obvious, visible case of just how far one's devotion travels. People kill for love, they die for love, they lie and they cheat and they hurt- for love. Married couples pledge themselves to one another and when the relationship goes South, for so many reasons that relationships do, the two turn from deeply devoted lovers to little or no caring of each other. 

Couples who have been together decades can be more like strangers to each other than actual strangers, all because of the space that is between them. Space that cannot be measured in inches or feet or miles. Space that can only be summed up as a distance created by words left unsaid, dreams turned to dust, and promises unkept.

It's truly bizarre when you think about it. How far our love travels. How far we're willing to let it go, to let it change, to let it end.

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