alone together.

i.

This evening, for the first time in a long time, it occurred to me that I can sit across from someone I love and still feel my void half-empty, nowhere near half-filled. We can talk for hours, and still find ourselves repeating the same stories week after week. You don’t remember what you told me last week, forget what I told you, and I just play along to your tune. When was it, that moment I realized it’s easier this way?

Today it felt like I was hearing the slow crack of a glass window as the wind hit it hard, from the outside, the whole time I was inside. Today I thought, it’s like listening to the echo that reverberates around my center, long after that glass has shattered.

This evening I realized that you can love a lot of people in your life, and still find yourself maddeningly, defenselessly alone.

ii.

Know your fight is not with them
Yours is with your time here
Dream your dreams but don’t pretend
Make friends with what you are.
– John Mayer, The Age of Worry

iii.

The truth is, maybe I deliberately took the long way to arrive at this conclusion. Maybe it’s true; I knew it all along. So I made a poor attempt to soften the blow, one I knew was coming from a mile away. Maybe I knew it all along: you can love a lot of people in your life and understand, deep down in your heart, that they are the wrong ones for you.

Or maybe you’re not right for them.

Or maybe,

you’re just not right for each other.

iv. 

“It sounds to me like your support system – core support system – they… aren’t here.” 

“But maybe I need to learn to give people a chance, too.”

v.

I had a revelation the other day, a small one; obvious.

We put on different personas depending on our company. We adopt specific roles depending on who it is that’s sitting across from us, that maybe it’s more about who we are to them and less about what they are to us.

Our perceptions of each other don’t always align; I could think of the person as my best friend, that whole time we’re sitting face to face, while he or she thinks surprisingly little of me. We could laugh the hour away, and still not notice that we’re entertained by separate jokes. We could exchange similar ideas, and still fail to connect the dots. We could just as well sit right across from each other, perfectly spaced apart by a standard-issue dinner table, and not feel that anything is amiss.

I can love you for being the person that you are, and still feel a gap as wide and as deep as the Pacific Ocean, between us.

vi.

I can love you whole, and still find myself empty.

vii. 

What now? Why now?

(Is it you? Is it me?)

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8 thoughts on “alone together.

  1. This post reminds me of my relationship with my best friend.We are so different and sometimes I feel painfully lonely when I’m with her. We are together, but I feel like she is far away, because we often don’t understand each other. We have very different views on life and other things.As the time goes we talk less and less, meet less and less and I wonder if it can be the end of our friendship .The only thing that we have in common is our university. What will happen when we graduate? I think we will go separate ways. I still try to do something, but I have a feeling that she’s interested in me only if she needs something.

    1. Hi again Paloma :) Funny you brought up about best friends – these days I think about my own and my head hurts. I think I write more about her than to her, which is a problem by itself. Also interesting that you mentioned your best friend (thanks for sharing with me btw) because this entry was written exactly because I came back from my weekly dinner with one of my closest friends here and found myself feeling lots of things, so convoluted – none of them whole. So this write-up came about; that I love her whole, because I do, and so I don’t blame her for our emotional disconnect and yet I don’t know if we can bridge it. Maybe we’re just on different channels and like you, I also find that most of my friends here expect or anticipate that I adopt specific roles with them – here I’m almost always The Listener, The Cipher, The Understanding Buddy. It’s a lot to do with hearing them out than vice versa, which is the sense that I get you’re saying about your best friend (I’m really sorry to hear this, and sorrier for not having any solutions what more able to offer any consolations).

      “What will happen when we graduate?”
      You’ll make the effort, and yes do it, to maintain the friendship. Try, because adjustment periods are difficult on everyone and the least another person could do is to be there to our best capabilities. But your life will also be in full motion and so you’ll make new friends and acquaintances, just as she will. Just remember that she won’t be your only chance at true friendship, so whether or not she’s part of it, don’t be held back by your fears about the future and its untapped possibilities okay? :)

      1. Thank you so much.I really needed to hear a piece of advice and your words helped me.) I will try to maintain the friendship and maybe it’ll be ok,who knows.

  2. Have i told you already that i love your thoughts and your quotes? Even though your texts are personal they can really reflect to one self’s thoughts, visuals, memories or experiences. And that’s really grandiose in its very own humble way.

    “it occurred to me that I can sit across from someone I love and still feel my void half-empty, nowhere near half-filled” it’s probably because no one else can understand someone else’ s void totally, we can relate to someone else’ s void, but we can’t dive as deep as the bottom may lie, if we can’t fill our void up to an extent then no one can do likewise. Human relations are simple, people make them complicated because this world is complicated itself as it is being offered to us, we can try to change it up to an extent which usually relates to our circle of friends and people we know, but the world usually evolves with us, without us. It’s the same with the quote on top of your article, that’s the loneliest things of all. Don’t know if any of what i said makes any specific meaning, just some sparse thoughts, less coherent than your emotionally structured thoughts.

    1. dramajjang (or should I call you something else?), you shower me with too many compliments! Don’t know what else to say other than thank you so, so much *humble bow*

      You kinda don’t make sense …but you also make absolute, perfect sense. I reread this comment of yours a few times today and I think that meaning you’re trying to get through is successfully transferred :) “it’s probably because no one else can understand someone else’ s void totally, we can relate to someone else’ s void, but we can’t dive as deep as the bottom may lie, if we can’t fill our void up to an extent then no one can do likewise.” -> Sometimes I find that I am selfish for putting expectations on others to ‘get’ me and so when they don’t, it’s such a hard blow to me and affects how I think about them too – though probably unfairly. And therefore too, of course I’ll constantly be disappointed because like you pointed out (and one I’ve reminded myself so many times)- human relations are simple and that we are dynamic beings, just as our friends/companions are. To load them with questions and meanings yet unclear to us is unfair towards them, but at the same time I think I keep hoping against hope that our thoughts finally come together at the same frequency, because most of the time it’s not answers that I expect or hold them liable for, but the understanding or empathy & sometimes gaining that empathy feels like the hardest one of all.

      1. You can call me by my Koreatized (if this bizarre word exists o.O) name, Kwon :D It was a rainy night, so i was showering you with some thoughts on your thoughts keeping in mind the “don’t hold back! share your thoughts” indication at the bottom :P You’re welcome!

        I’m glad i could deliver the message, even in a slightly odd way :P It is kind of selfish in one hand, but on the other hand this expectation is quite sincere, if the people we want to understand us they actually don’t, it’s a bit tough. I mean, they are people we either have chosen or life has brought to us, so it’s a higher collaboration than it would be with any other around that is not part of our closer circle. Disappointment is part of the game, yet, it usually reflects on us since we have the expectations, rarely though it may be reflected on others due to the expectation part and feels like demanding. “To load them with questions and meanings yet unclear to us is unfair towards them”, since it’s unclear it may be food for thought and it may get a clearer picture on our mind and it may trigger a quite interesting conversation, it’s not always necessary for many things to be told, it may be a few phrases, but the depth may lead quite downwards in a positive manner of speaking. “I think I keep hoping against hope that our thoughts finally come together at the same frequency” that’s a true and understandable craving in terms of human existence, so hoping even against hope (this owned so much!) is more than welcome! “most of the time it’s not answers that I expect or hold them liable for, but the understanding or empathy & sometimes gaining that empathy feels like the hardest one of all”, sometimes the biggest answers cannot be uttered, instead you receive the sparkling vibes of the aforementioned state of being. It ain’t easy, but it’s rewarding when it happens, i’ve had my best discussions at times during vacations at a new environment, after beers or drinks (well, not to the extent of becoming a satellite roaming around the earth xD), the clarity of the moment is immense since you’ve let your defenses, but not your guard, down.

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