If you knew me when I was young, you never would have imagined me as the solitary sort. I was always with friends, either surrounded by people or animals or any sort of distraction. Yet I never fully trusted anyone, for I was raised to keep secrets. And keep them I did, well into my thirties and beyond. It turned out to be a great quality as a therapist, for I could hold even the most heinous truths close to my chest and not betray those most accustomed to betrayals.
And so it is that I find myself at nearly sixty preferring my own company and that of my husband, children and a couple of very dear friends. With little tolerance for idle chitchat and disingenuous people, I am rarely inclined to cultivate new relationships, preferring instead spontaneous interactions with those I meet while bicycling or hiking or, more rarely, at gatherings. Spending the balance of time in silence is a luxury I never take for granted.
I wonder if I am antisocial or simply set in my ways, but life is full enough with its eddies and surges, both my own as well as those of loved ones. I’d rather invest myself in a precious few rather than to twist in awkward silence while others drink themselves into conversation.
It was with great spontaneity today then, that I struck out with a friend with whom I have shared only a few hours in the past. We lunched, laughed, and conversed nonstop for most of the afternoon. Coming from very different worlds, we disclosed heart and soul and life experiences. And I felt blessed and lightened and energized to think that I might have discovered another kindred spirit in this magnificent hall of mirrors called life. Makes it worth investing in the human race, if only for a day now and again.