“Kindred spirits will find each other.” And when they do, they will recognize one another through an
insider signal. A decoded moment. Some tiny detail that triggers a whole world,
acts as shorthand for a shared culture, captures where the people have landed
and encapsulates their edges. To me, this moment is sacred. Probably because it
doesn’t happen that often. So when it does, it’s all hearts on deck. When I smell out someone’s identity, one that resonates with
my own, I start missing them in my past. I curse the world for not connecting
us earlier in life. I see them as the friend I always wanted to have, and hope
that they feel the same way. I’m not a stalker, I swear. The beautiful part is, all of this happens in an instant.
Even if it feels like a lifetime. It’s relativity at its finest. The dangerous part is, sometimes it happens so fast that we
fail to recognize it. And we miss an opportunity to connect with someone
special. We have to keep our specs peeled.
“Finding friendship with someone whose creative path
parallels our own is a rare gift.” The hardest time to make friends is when we feel bad about
ourselves. Whether we’re experiencing pain, sadness, depression, loneliness,
insignificance or a full blown existential crisis, nobody wants to start a new
relationship with a train wreck. It’s simply not an attractive feature. People want to make
friends with happy people. Which is ironic, because that’s precisely when we need friends
the most––when things work the least. Looking back, I bet most of us would agree that the biggest withdrawals from our human capital accounts seemed to occur when life was at its lowest. Funny how that works. All the more reason to dig our wells before we’re thirsty. To
make friends before we need them. Because the only thing worse than feeling
like shit is feeling like shit in a corner.
“What are the limits of your we?” Belonging is a complex experience. I used to think it was a simple matter of feeling like you
fit in. But I’m learning that belonging is about a bigger, broader
and deeper we. It’s about the entirereality of our connectedness
with other people.It’s about the role we play in the
human family. And it’s about what we’re part of that’s bigger than just us. The hard part is,if we want to
fully inhabit our ideal we,belonging will confront uswith
the places we have to stretch and grow. I remember when I transitioned from the freelance world to a
team environment, I was sick for the first two weeks. Working alone was all I
knew, and when the status quo was disrupted, my body shut down. Who knew
playing well with others was such a taxing mental and physical experience? The point is, I eventually adjusted. Just a few growing
pains in the process of shifting my pronouns. It’s all part of the broader experience
of what it means to belong.