On Vulnerability

By the calendar the season has changed from Summer to Autumn, and I find myself feeling inner changes as well.  They feel scary and upsetting to me, and I look for some relief – for some notion of what is coming.  Not knowing makes me feel uncomfortable and vulnerable.

Over the summer I spent a lot of time with “tall, handsome, funny man” and found myself helping him to find some stability in his life.  His housing situation has improved, fortunately; however, it makes him farther away from my house than before.

He is a cyclist, and because of his interest and our friendship I have entered that realm as well, buying a recumbent tricycle.  Initially we rode everyday after my purchase, nearly 30 days in a row.  I took off one day; he was out of town for a few.  Then the autumn winds began to blow and they brought allergens that have set me back, now for two weeks.  I haven’t ridden in three days.  After returning to town my friend began moving to his new space, so our riding has been sporadic for the past week or so.  Tomorrow we will meet at our usual place and time for a ride.  His new residence means we each have to drive to our meeting place. Before, the place was only a block away from where he lived.  Again, fear that our liaison will change.

Things are changing for him in a positive way, and I am glad I have had some influence in that.  However, I also feel threatened by those changes; fear of loss.  I wonder about how our relationship will change.  He certainly doesn’t need the kind of help I provided earlier.  That ‘helpful’ me seems to be out of a job!  Now we are beginning a new phase of our friendship and I feel very vulnerable.  Relationships have not been my forte – nor his.

My focus has been on having no expectations, accepting my friend as he is, with all the issues, and there ARE issues.  He is not interested in a romantic relationship, as we generally understand the word ‘romantic’.  I’m not interested in a romantic relationship of that kind either; however, I am interested in companionship and intimacy, and I want to see the changes as an opportunity to grow and expand in ways I’ve not done before.  It seems to be about letting go of my old patterns of relating, and learning new ways.

I told my girlfriend a few months ago that I’d ‘gone down the rabbit hole’ with this person – I HAD to go there, no choice.  To continue on with the adventure is in one way very exciting and in other ways, very scary.  The bottom line for me is, though, that I only have one day at a time – there are no guarantees in life, and things do change – so I will enjoy every moment I have with this person, however it shows up.  It’s my challenge to myself in loving someone, whether they love me or not – and of course, that is the fear as well.

Accept whatever comes to you woven in the pattern of your destiny; for what could more aptly fit your needs? (Marcus Aurelius)

 

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3 thoughts on “On Vulnerability”

  1. What is, is what we fail to see most times and that is, we are always vulnerable and we are always safe. Mostly, that is a choice. One must learn to let go of “fear” as if setting a cup on a table and turning away. You can always go back and get it again…if it is the only cup you have. Why limit your wealth by judging it to be outside of yourself? You are far greater than you yet can conceive. Fear, not Hate, is the opposite of Love. Love,B
    P.S. Walgreen’s has these wonderful masks, 10-12 in a box that help Margie with the air born allergens. You can still ride in a little blue mask. Smile.

    1. I have some masks and have used them – they really have helped. Had to stop riding because of allergic coughing, not asthma, which is a little weird. Went to the doctor and got some treatment and meds. Better now. We resume tomorrow. Thanks for the comment regarding fear – simple, but not always easy. In my process it is important to acknowledge the feelings, because I learned to stuff them when I was young, and after a time wasn’t even aware I had feelings. Becoming aware of them and learning to articulate what I feel helps. Fear comes from the mind/ego that tells stories about ‘what ifs’. I’m learning not to listen – but I still needed to express it.

  2. …”It seems to be about letting go of my old patterns of relating, and learning new ways”…well then, even being aware of this is living a far richer life than most of us.

    I am sorry to be so late in commenting; I’ve been tossing around thoughts. I think being truly open to love and aware of one’s fear is being open to the entire world. To expect to be without fear is a tall order. How do we ever know? We don’t. Ever. Going down a rabbit hole isn’t such a bad thing. Again, we never know. But isn’t that the beauty of it all? My thought is that this is where courage comes in – saying “yes” to the rabbit hole and knowing that the only way to love freely is to love without expectation, which is difficult for most of us, certainly me. I see your courage here. I’ve seen your courage before. What you give him will come back, whether through him or someone else. What he gives you (and only he knows how much of himself he has given since he’s the only one in his head) will come back to him, again whether through you or someone else. It’s all a circle. But the only way to open that door to the entire world, is to walk through the door, down the rabbit hole….whatever, however. So you are ahead of the game, and bravely, no matter what….and this is why I read your blog, and stay in touch with you, because of the golden nuggets of truth I find here.

    Namaste’

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