Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose…Janis Joplin
With every loss comes freedom….
So freedom, personal freedom. I not talking about political freedom, religious freedom, freedom from persecution. I think we can all agree these are important. I am talking about personal circumstances. Last night a friend and I were talking. She is losing a roommate and thinking that maybe she is ready to live alone. Her husband died 6 or so years ago. Since then she has had various roommates live in the house with her. Now she is losing a longtime roommate and looking at making a change.
So driving home, I think about my life. I am more free than I have ever been in my life. I don’t even have a fish. I live alone. All the people I am attached to live separate lives from me. This is not to say we do not love each other and spend time together, but that our daily lives are not dependent on each other. I took care of my mom a lot. I was always concerned about her eating, her health,. her emotional state, but she passed away a couple of years ago and that role went with it. I lived my son up until a couple of years ago. I filled the mom role with that. What’s for dinner, how are you feeling? How was your day? It was nice, having that time with him. But he is a grown up and moved into his own apartment and is living his own life. Sure I still talk and text with him, but we are not interdependent on each other.
I can do anything I want with my life, totally free to choose. I do not have to consider anyone else when I make my daily or long term choices. Is that freedom? I have been kind of stripped down, watching one person after another leave, losing my home and all that entailed. Letting go of keeping a pet. This is the first time in my entire life I have lived without a pet, either dog or cat. I miss that.
Am I lonely? I don;t think so. I don’t sit around in the evenings sad or lost. I eat dinner, watch some tv, go online, text with my people. I sleep good. Sometimes I am a little lost, but it doesn’t last. I take care of it, I connect with someone, I take a walk, go to the gym, something. If someone asked me, I would say I like my life, I feel good in it. I like the people in it. I like my community, I like the church I have chosen, I even like my job.
So why do I feel like I need a partner in this? Why do I continue on the search for romantic love? Why do I even need that? I look at my friends who are married or in long term relationships and they are no happier than I am. Most are less happy. And yet they still strive to keep that connection. I was married for 20 years so I know long term. I have had relationships that have lasted multiple years. I was not happier in those than I am now. Do we need that angst and passion to feel alive, to feel connected Is it at some cellular level we search for connection even if that does not makes us happy? Are we searching for something beyond happy? Maybe so. Because it is in relationships that we grow, that we feel the deepest, that we stretch our minds and our souls to reach a place of love. Even though I am happy now, I felt more alive then.
So right now, at this time in my life, I am free. I choose my days, I choose my nights. It is a calm moment in my life readying me to reach out for the next storm. Because it is in the storms I feel most alive. That is where I shine, where I feel passion, energy and love. So I guess the search continues. Can I have love and freedom? I hope so.