Community – It’s Not Just a TV Show
I wrote this yesterday, for posting today and now that it’s later…
Update – yes, I know this is all very whiny… please feel free to skip it. It comes of sounding like I am unhappy… I am not. I am perfectly happy with my life… but even perfectly happy sometimes can do with a tune-up.
My friend Lauren posted a blog recently that really kinda hit home. I could have written quite a bit of it myself. I have been mulling it over since she posted it. Read it 5 or 6 times… sometimes having someone else say something that you are thinking is a great way to push you towards more thinking.
She wrote on her blog about being surrounded by community, but also being lonely.
My situation is different than hers… I am not “lonely”, per se… but I think this all feeds into the sense of “searching” for something that I have been having lately.
I have always been jealous of people “of faith”… there’s a few reasons for that. I always thought it must be nice to have a belief in something bigger than you. Something that was permanent. Something watching out for you. And, now that I examine it… it’s also that people of faith “belong” somewhere. And maybe that’s really more it. Because I don’t think that I long to have a deity watching out for me. I am rolling around to the idea of believing in a universal force of some kind… but, like gravity, I am not sure it’s a personal thing. (prolly more on this in a later post). But people who “belong” to a church, or a spiritual group or, hell, even a book club… they have this sense of connection to the wider world. And I think that’s something I feel a lack of. My world is fairly small.
I had been part of the roller derby “community” here for three years. But that community is a hard one to be in for a long time. It kinda sucks the life out of you… you give to it. There’s not much “giving back” other than the joy of playing, and if you aren’t playing, as I was not at the end, it’s basically a job.
“Community” in general has always been hard for me. We moved every couple of years when I was young. To me, “friends” are something that you have in your life briefly and then they or you go away and that’s it. The only people I have known my whole life are related to me. Some of you reading this blog have had a “relationship” with me longer than most of my friendships in the real world. So I tend not to get close to people, because they are just going to go away (or turn on you … but childhood trauma of being the unpopular-new-smart-fat kid is another topic).
The SB also moved a lot as a kid – although he does have some friends he’s known for a while. But he is very outgoing… he is “friends” with everyone in the world almost the second he meets them. I’m not good at that. I am not “social”… I can’t strike up a conversation with a perfect stranger because my base level assumption is that they are not interested. It takes me time and a lot of effort for me to open up to people, and I can be easily dissuaded by the tiniest stumbling block to just go back into myself and hide. (Weirdly, this does not apply to blogging… only real life).
All this sense lately of trying to find a “connection” – maybe it’s all going back to the fact that I have been in this one place for years now, but I still feel like it’s not “home”… I don’t feel connected to this city in any particular way. I could easily move at a moment’s notice to some other place. who / what would miss me?
Contrast – The SB loves this place. It’s HIS city, his home. He would miss his places, his people, his favorite waitress and bartender and butcher and bakery lady and mail deliverer. So maybe I am just looking for a way to shed the transience that sits deep inside me, and connect to something bigger than me.
I can’t join “a church”… that would be lying. I really do not believe in the “God with a capital G” revelatory religions. I can’t. I have tried. I just can’t wrap my head around the religions with books.
I don’t really want to join and “alternative” religious group of any kind… again – while I am leaning more towards “there’s something out there”… I don’t want to have to go through this step and that step and do this thing and that thing according to the rules of whatever they have in place.
I cannot have real relationships with people I work with. I have always felt that work and personal should be kept separate. It’s just too messy when work conflicts come up, etc.
I have a couple of friends… but the one I can actually share the most stuff with lives in San Francisco… And the one here is a dear, sweet, (batty), woman, and she’s great, but one local friend does not a “community” make. And, really, I am not friends enough with her yet to really be able to open up about anything more serious than derby and Chinese food… (see above). Actually, even those two probably know less about me than my blog readers, now that I think about it.
I don’t have a neat bow to wrap this in…it’s just a ramble.