Dear Mini Wheats: It’s not your fault.

I began my day today by crying into my cereal. Literally. Well, I got up, made coffee, showered, and dressed, and then read an email that caused the Inundation of the Mini Wheats. Weird part was, it wasn’t that bad (the email). It was a bit angsty and uncertain and tinged with sadness. It reflected the inevitability of… life, really. And honestly, I was partly crying for me, too. I just don’t know exactly why, or in what proportion.

Then I started thinking. Ironically, I had been thinking about something since I got up that dovetailed to a large degree with the contents of the email, and so my thoughts morphed into philosophical ponderings far too weighty for pre-8am on a Friday morning. However, my thoughts coalesced into an interesting theory. Of course, I had to go to work, which is not an environment that lends itself well to deep thought, and so my brain and body just stored the whole ball of thought and emotion on my behalf until I have the time and environment at my disposal to deal with it. It’s currently residing in my left shoulder. (This is pretty common for me.) The right shoulder is fine. Relaxed and comfortable. The left feels like high-tension wire. It’s pulling up towards my ear and it aches and is a constant reminder that I’m not done yet.

My theory relates in part to the contents of the email (whose contents I will not be divulging), and in part to a conversation I had with someone else a couple of weeks ago. The gist of it all is connection. Connection between two people. Particularly sexually, when two people enter into sync that is beyond the physical, and the connection is both within them and greater than the two of them. As I understand it, the possibilities of this connection most typically occur between two people with strong connections at other levels: intellectually, emotionally, “chemically”, etc. I say “as I understand it” because I don’t know. I understand sexual sync, to a degree, but only from a purely physical level. Like when you lose that awkwardness with your partner when you know each other just well enough that you both know when and how to move, and it all just… works. That’s pretty cool. But it’s not transcendent. Hell, it’s not on any level other than the physical.

I have no idea if I’m defective at some level, or if I’m normal and the people I know who’ve described it are anomalies, but I don’t “get” sex as anything other than sex. I don’t use it as a tool or a weapon or a method of communication or an expression of love or as an attempt to “connect” with someone on any other level. I think it’s ridiculous that it’s attached to a set of rules and etiquette and whatnot. (Granted, I have a healthy dose of cynicism just thanks to the sexual proclivities of the “religious”, given how easy and inevitable it seems to be for them to stray.) I might want those things, those possible connections, but sex is just sex. I don’t comprehend how sex is somehow astronomically better with someone you’re in love with vs. someone you just think is hot. I’ve had both. I have no idea if anyone I’ve slept with has felt that connection with me, or experienced anything other than an orgasm after we’ve been messing up the sheets together. “Wow, that was totally transcendent!” is not a phrase one would ever expect to hear from the mouth of the average man. So I wonder. Is there something wrong with me? Or have I just not found the Right Person yet? The person with whom that level of connection is possible.

The thought that occurred to me this morning is this: I get people. I understand how a person becomes who he/she is based on where they’ve come from. I get how they feel about things and why. I get relationships and how people interact with each other. I can see where people’s relationships will go and what dangers they face. I can read people and determine who they are and what they want and how to get what I want from them, and I can manipulate them to get it. I try not to do that. It’s too easy, and it’s not nice or fair and it’s just asking for some very ugly karma. BUT. While I get myself, and I get other people, and I get other people interacting with more other people, I don’t get me interacting with other people. I don’t understand how people feel about me, or why. I only understand on a basic level why I intimidate people. I haven’t the slightest clue why someone would find me sexy or fascinating or hate me, for that matter. For example, for some reason most of the guys I’ve ever dated, and the boyfriends I’ve ever had, are not good at giving compliments, or expressing appreciation, or saying “I love you”. This has always been a problem. Why? Because most of the time I need to hear it or I don’t know it’s there. Sometimes I will just know. But not often. Not often enough. And despite my connection problems WITH people, my connections TO people are very, very strong, and if I’m in love with someone and doing all I do that goes along with that, the uncertainty of not knowing where he’s at is not a happy place. It’s a roadblock. To trust, to relying on someone, to relaxing. And no, there really isn’t a way of addressing that without sounding like touchy-feely therapy chick or like an obsessive crazy person. Rock. Hard place.

So I wonder. Is it binary? Is it one or the other? Is it because I have a three-(four?)dimensional view of other people and their lives that I am cut off from my own? Is it impossible for me to ever experience true connection and transcendence with another person because I know whether or not you’re ever going to experience it with whomever you’re with? Is it impossible for me to ever be really certain over time if someone loves me, or appreciates me, or thinks I’m beautiful because I know whether or not your partner thinks you are? Reading over that, it doesn’t even make sense to me, and yet there is supporting evidence.

I have no idea if this is true or not. I could be completely delusional and just sad because I’m 30 and single and only have one cat (who isn’t even really mine). And if I’m right, it’s not like there’s anything I can do about it. In any case, I help people, when I can. I can tell them what I see. I can give advice. I can commiserate. People tell me things. Always have. They tell me they feel comfortable with me and can’t believe the things that they reveal when they’re around me. Okay. I respect that, and I respect secrets. But in doing that, in being there, it leaves me outside. Of my life, and everyone else’s. And I have no idea how to get in.

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