The dependence of comfort: Ode to my Seattle women

May 11, 2009 Candace Morris 6 Comments

good evening.
how are you tonight?
are you putting on your pajamas,
donning the big house sweater?
are you lighting candles,
sipping tea?
It feels so quiet here...and the quiet after a storm is even more still.

Okay. At the risk of sounding like Delilah here, I truly do wonder how other people find solace, true comfort for themselves. Me? I am pretty good at it. Hell, I've made an art form of it, and I am proud to say I am actually doing it for a living.

There is comfort everywhere.
In the smell of her leather interior.
In the heated chamomile and lavender rice bag,
In the shadows from the soft kitchen light.

There is comfort in the sweet smell of his neck,
In pancakes and pina coladas,
In the sighs of relief heard across the city,
In the gifts of letters in your mailbox,
In three pitchers and dominoes,
In friends.

But I didn't know that last bit until it was almost stripped from me.

I have to tell you, I fancy myself quite independent. I am surprised when I miss someone, even more shocked if I feel like I need them to help me, and damn-well stunned if I feel comforted by them. By them, I mean females.

Female relationships have always been tricky - and funnily enough - this is true of all the females I know. But in the last three or four years, something amazing has been forming in my life. There is a group of women here around me that most women dream of. It is almost movie material: funny, fashionable, soulful, artistic, witty, caring, fabulous, not-perfect, complicated, and above all - one big bubble of SUPPORT.

The last two weeks, Joel and I have been pondering relocating across the country. His work was terminating his position unless we moved to Florida, and we were actually considering it...for the spirit of adventure, in the name of courage. That was the first week.

The second week, I lost my breath. I lost my tranquility. I would have lost them.

I had no idea I was attached. I had no idea I felt insecure about my role, I had no idea that I relied on them more than just for fun, sex talk, or boozy brunches. What a gross oversight on my part. You have to wonder how things will change when you move. You start to play games with yourself, listening to lies of "you're not that important to them," "they will be glad to have a break from your complexities..." etc.

Alas. Insecurity...I have always approached it with the understanding that it was ME. I was responsible for my own security and no one else was to be put upon to assure me of their attachment. If I felt insecure, it was my own problem. But through this whole process and a few pretty amazing, honest conversations, I see that I can express insecurities without demanding assurances.

The anxiety of the last two weeks is still poisoning my bones, despite feeling it slowly slipping down the drain with each hot bath. But this time, I didn't do it alone. I didn't put the whole burden, this great pressure, of comforting myself solely upon my shoulders. Dears, how I find celebratory clinks in this small step towards connection and dependence.

I have also discovered the next step of recovering my small child inside - allowing her to be insecure. It repels my being, it turns my stomach with weakness and disgust, but I know it's next. Despite my dread, I find small courage in one thought:

Perhaps this part wasn't meant to be a solo act after all.

In candlelit contemplation,

p.s. we're not moving.

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