I enjoyed the words of another blogger on how little we really know about each other: We Are Lonely People. To a friend I said that there seem to be all kinds of barriers between people, not just physical distance. She sagely replied: “There are so many taboos, shades of meaning, social etiquettes that sometimes it is like treading through a minefield.”
Well, I have certainly burned my fingers a few times, but it’s easier just to be oneself – and, from that perspective, to be more patient with others. I do understand (from experience) reservations about trusting people… it can take years. There are people I’ve known for a very long time and it’s as though they’re standing on the other side of a tent wall – all I see is the shadow. Sometimes I can tap on the tent flap and they’ll respond or not respond, depending on what they feel like. You sort of know them, certainly longer than people they see more of, but… well. I sound a little like Oswald Wynd, who wrote The Ginger Tree! He talked about how you know people so well and then they’re gone for one reason or another, and it’s as though your friendship with them has never been. That seems to be human nature, and the nature of socializing in general.
We lose friends for the most mundane of reasons – friends who have left the area or have got married and are busy adding to the population. As nothing is certain in life, we should be ourselves no matter who we’re talking to. Things fall out the way they do because they must.
My Zodiac animal is the Wood Snake – I had a friend who was a Fire Horse. Yes, the friendship just disintegrated into smoke, hissing and stamping hooves. Perhaps it was always meant to turn out that way, and that’s how I prefer to think of it now.
Whether we choose to communicate or not, misunderstanding each other’s intentions is so easy to do – particularly when at least one person in the mix isn’t prepared to give it proper thought and would rather just leave. If we had a better idea of what the other person felt about things (lots of things) we might be less inclined to make wrong assumptions, or at least realize that the good things outweigh the bad.
Quiz time – my result is as follows:
***You Are 68% Open Minded***
You are a very open minded person, but you’re also well grounded.
Tolerant and flexible, you appreciate most lifestyles and viewpoints.
But you also know where you stand firm, and you can draw that line.
You’re open to considering every possibility – but in the end, you stand true to yourself.