I recently (actually, yesterday, as of this writing – 6/4/2016) posted an image/meme giving a definition of Intimacy:
It made me think about my own definition of intimacy; what it means to me. I posted a response to the original, but decided to capture it here, as well…to be more permanent for the sake of my own journey.
I would disagree with the statement in one way; intimacy is indeed ALSO about who you let touch you — but not physically. To me, it is very much about who you let in (as well as give your attention to).
It’s a matter of who to whom you lay bare the essential contents of your heart and soul and mind, in the trust that they will be safely taken care of; respected and protected, appreciated, even highly cherished.
To be intimate is to enjoy the prospect of being vulnerable because it feels like the reward is far greater than the risk involved. It is also about providing protection to that same level of vulnerability in another person when they need it most, and not turning away or taking advantage of it.
Intimacy, to me, is actually a cornerstone foundation for true interpersonal unconditional love because it means someone can be genuine, flawed, frightened, strong, nervous, joyful, distracted, intense, playful or withdrawn and it is understood as part of the human condition. And it is all OK. Again, it need not be physical.
Intimacy, at its best and highest, is about allowing yourself to express and to offer your whole being and have it be received without reservation, without terms and conditions.
I have been blessed to know this in my lifetime, to varying degrees. It makes life feel far more complete, or at least more vibrant and enriched, when it is present and active and a constant presence in my daily process.