I wonder if as you reach your late 60’s you start to think more about “feelings” and less from your head? My second optician, who was a friend for 35 years, and 10 years younger than me, just died of cancer tonight. I knew it was coming but it is still surrealistic. I am pondering lots more, as I become more conscious of my age and the loss of friends, if I made good decisions? I did in being his friend and am thankful he was mine.
We all make decisions where our head overrules our heart and I wonder if that is the best we can do? I have always believed it but began to doubt it 20 or 30 years later. Not that I know that the alternative was better. I just wondered, what if?
I am experimenting with communicating, in writing, more from my heart and less from my head. It has made me think a lot more about the touching emails, I have received over the years from friends, both men and women. I wrote an essay on feelings, as experienced by a long married man, seeing his wife leaving for a 5 day trip to Fla to do some work at their vacation home. It was an attempt at more feelings and less intellectualism but it ended up being both. I thought it was an honest projection of what it might be like and what the implications are. I have been divorced once and married now twice so I have learned something, I hope.
A week after writing the essay, I was thinking about an email from an old college girl friend (45 years ago) who said she was trying to share more of her feelings with old friends but not ready to do so yet. Then thinking about her email comment, I looked at the one picture I have of her, at that age, and tried to recall if she looked like that. On my computer, I tried to enhance it to look more like what my memory struggled to recall. It took about 20 minutes and then I went to sleep, unsatisfied with my foggy memory and the still somewhat unfamiliar photo.
I had a lot of interesting dreams that night. I saw, symbolically, the relationship I had with this pretty red haired lady, and an “old girl friend” that I had dated a bit before meeting my wife. There was a third one too but, I cannot recall who the third one was as it was a dream state. As a result of these symbolic images, I now better understand my feelings for all of them, in the past and now in the present.
Despite what some people claim, I find that it is hard to believe that, years later, you don’t still love the people you have truly loved. I suspect that deep in my heart I still love them as much as I did then. What is interesting is that I can be truly be happy for them being with the partners they chose, which I could not have felt for them years ago. It is now like being their brother rather than a lover. Would you not be happy for your sister if she married someone perfect for her? Well, that is my experience or so I think it is.
There is also the lady I left a year before I met my wife. It is fascinating to me that I made the right intellectual decision leaving her. But like my college girl friend, she was my best friend in a time when I needed a special friend. I talked to her by phone a few times months ago and I tried to learn why she looks at life so differently than I do. That was of course why I left her. I mention her in my previous essay above as she was the lady who was in real estate. She did not believe in marriage commitments and I did and still do.
I think I have always been a bit of a “boring” intellectual, who finds work, books, and time alone to learn, great fun while people were more of a challenge, as few shared my interests. I have gotten better however from a diversion in life spent selling products almost door to door, for 5 years. I learned to “be” more relatable and even enjoy almost anyone I meet, at least for short time spans.
It is an interesting time in my life, a time to try to understand “relationships.” I am sure I will not ever understand relationships but I will understand more about them. I have never valued money greatly. I did not know until recently what I really valued. You cannot take money with you, but I believe you can take memories you are proud of and happy with. I will joyously celebrate that wealth which I have acquired.