You are missing from me

I read somewhere that the phrase “I miss you” is inadequate. It is, and also inaccurate. In French (so the story goes) the sentiment is more accurately said “you are missing from me.” Much more expressive of the feeling.

Recently a dear friend, one of my “first circle”, went missing from my life. And I am devastated. It is not that I miss her, it that she is missing from me. My life is incomplete without her in it. There is a hollowness that is beyond sadness, and compounding this loss is my role in it. I went too deep too fast, not allowing for her woundedness as a barrier to receiving my love.

I had to examine my part in this disaster. And what I discovered disturbs me… Beck said I am “missing a sensitivity chip.” She was right of course; being a minor Aspy can do that. She had told me when we reconnected that her ex-husband had died not to long ago and that one of her children had also died. Both from alcoholism. The sorrow I felt completely overwhelmed the reality she experienced. When we talked it was pretty much the second anniversary of her daughter’s death, and her ex had only died less than 3 months before. While he had been awful to her and she had divorced him several years before, 35 years of marriage is not so easily dismissed. Yet I did; my emotions came to the forefront, disrespecting the depth of hers. So incredibly insensitive. She then went on to use more cruel descriptives of me, which I did not deserve, but I can understand how she would feel this way. And now she is missing from me.

It occurs to me that unconditional love is without expectations, conditions or attachments to what is received from the object of our love; we love because it is what we do. I noticed this when my granddog Teddy was over. I hold Teddy and just love on him, and what I get back is a perfect reflection of what I am pouring out. My friend has a lovely dog (who liked me when we met, apparently unusual but I’m not surprised) and she can love her dog in just that way but I don’t think she has made the connection between that feeling of unconditional love for her dog and what I am offering to her, which is exactly the same thing. And it is frustrating beyond words.

As I have mentioned before, love is a state of mind, an inside-out existence that transcends the common, worldly notion that it must be reciprocated in kind, or that sex is a necessary component of the deepest relationships.

To love another person unconditionally is a rare and precious experience; too often it is tainted or filtered by attachments. What a shame, and such a loss for both of us.

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