I want to be held by arms wrapped around me. I want to put my head on another’s shoulder and lean my body on another’s body. I haven’t felt this feeling so viscerally for a long time, as I do now. There is a longing for touch, but more than that, for support too.
When I sit here with it, sit here on this very couch, which holds me so generously, I can imagine being held, being loved in that way that I am the most important and loved in the world by another, and wouldn’t it be amazing that the feeling be mutual?
And here I sit wondering, even then if it were so, would it all be only the gift I give myself? To see myself as the most loved through another’s eyes? Perhaps I should skip the middle man and love myself. For who knows me better than I? And who has the power to forgive, for who knows better than I all that needs to be forgiven? And isn’t it the kindest act of all, this unconditional act of forgiving and loving? Perhaps it frees the whole world of my neediness and demands. And perhaps it frees you to love me more honestly without having to perform acts of heroism to prove your love. Frees you to be you and only you.
But there is more to this that I am beginning to recognize is also true, this wanting to be free of the need for a lover’s love, to find a spiritual altitude where this moment as it is, is enough. I, of all people (I can hardly believe it) armor my heart, the same heart I give away so freely, I wait to see if it is rejected and rush to protect it. Not that it works. But I see the effort to deflect the pain and find a way through to solid ground again and again. I either need to convince you to love me, or convince myself that I don’t need it. Neither work. And maybe neither are true. And what does life look like to just give up? Can I even give up? I assumed it meant that I would transcend this feeling of want. But maybe it just means that I accept it. And since I have NO answers, I will try to take Rilke’s advice:
“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”