aspiringoptimist

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Intimacy, defined

I recently (actually, yesterday, as of this writing – 6/4/2016) posted an image/meme giving a definition of Intimacy:

intimacy meme

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because it means someone can be genuine, flawed, frightened, strong, nervous, joyful, distracted, intense, playful or withdrawn and it is understood as part of the human condition.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.

No matter how strong and independent and possessed of self-knowledge someone might be, those gifted characteristics (again, my view) are not as fulfilling without being able to share them with another person, or other people, on some level. It could be a special relationship…or telling your life story so that others can be inspired, holding nothing back. This is not be mistaken for being incomplete or unworthy.

And I would also add, the one “exception” to this might be those special people who truly establish an intimate relationship with their Creator (by any name) that cannot be touched by the limitations of the human condition and ego.

I am eternally grateful for having had this in my life. And if for no other reason, although I have many, I say thank you to the Universe and all of Creation for that.


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Glass Elevators

Seems I use this blog on a annual basis; I guess Facebook has somewhat taken its place for saying my piece. For some reason, I feel compelled to go this route today. Let me know what you think.  

elevator shaft

Have you ever been through a similar scenario in your life; dealt with a familiar issue maybe even more than once or twice, had to resolve something that you thought you were done with, struggled with feelings or ideas or beliefs you thought you had put behind you – but now, because you are in a different place, you are able to see things from a different perspective when they come up? I call that the glass elevator condition. You can see where you’ve been, and even though things on every floor look essentially identical, you know you’re going higher than where you were originally.

Different people may get on or off the elevator; sometimes you make conversation and connect with them, and they even be going to your floor. Some, perhaps most, are only along for part of the ride and may not really affect you that much except for delaying your journey upward with their own priorities; doing what they need to do and going wherever they are going. And you don’t hold it against them; they’re just not going to the same place as you are.

It is important to remember where you came from; to recognize that the view from the upper floors is different for a reason. Realize that the things which looked big on the ground floor don’t look as big from the 10th or 14th floor, but you can still see them. It’s just that your view has shifted.  It is important to ask yourself daily; what’s on my ground floor as I take a ride in the glass elevator to the “upper floors” of my life? It may even be a little disconcerting or make you feel insecure to be up higher than you used to be, but the only way to rise is to take step in, press that button, and enjoy the shift from where you came from to where you’re going.