Friday, May 15, 2009


Before I launch in to my rambling, I just want to note that I do realize I touched on this subject very briefly in an old post, but I've been thinking about it a lot more this week and felt I needed to explore it more fully. Plus, I wrote a poem last night and the following stream of consciousness leads up to that.

I know that I am not 'normal'. I have lots of idiosyncrasies that I try to keep in check when I'm around people I don't know. It's difficult to do that. I've been thinking about how much I question the way my quirky-ness translates in my interactions with other people. There are a few people I seem to 'click' with. People who aren't scared away by my strange comments and the fact that I have a hard time being serious in person. There are plenty of people I don't 'click' with. This is understandable. Some people are boring and only like other boring people.

But sometimes I think I have made a new friend and then it just doesn't seem to work out and I find myself wondering... did I say or do something to make that person not call me back or not respond to my email? In the past, I would wrack my brain trying to figure out if I'd said something or done something they could have considered rude or offensive. Now I'm beginning to realize that sometimes you just don't click with certain people, no matter how much it seems like you should. Not that you wouldn't make small talk with them in a social situation, but for some reason, you just don't connect on that deeper friendship level. Even if it seems you have everything (or even just a lot of things) in common with that person. I've met people with an almost identical upbringing to mine, people with kids the same age and gender as mine, people with the same beliefs as mine.... and we just didn't connect.

I was thinking about the few close friends I've made since I became an adult (well, since I graduated college). If someone were to write up a brief description of each one of us and print it out, you wouldn't read it and guess us to be friends. But when you look deeper, I think you'd see that it's not those three or four big things that make people friends.... it's the million smaller things that form the true understandings. When you look at those smaller things and really get to know the person, you can understand where they stand on the big ticket issues and appreciate their point of view and accept it even if it is strikingly different from your own.

I guess I'm just seeing that it really is fine to not connect with some people regardless of how much sense it makes at first. No one needs to feel bad about it and the worst thing you can do is to try to force it to happen when it obviously isn't working out. Your true friends should be people you feel comfortable with. People with whom you each feel the freedom to express your thoughts or feelings about something without worrying the friendship will end. The people you always have a million things to you want to tell them, but it's okay to just be together and talk about nothing. It's something you can't create or force. It just happens. And when it does, there are few things better.

(needs work, but go with it.....)

You know when it's there
because of all the times it was absent.
An easy back-and-forth.
Plenty to say, but never needing to say it.
The understanding...
a small part of one belonging to part of the other.
The few glaring differences fade
as thousands of little similarities
come to light.
Suddenly realizing you can't
remember not knowing.
And you don't want to.

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