This is a guest post by Lynn Fang from Upcylced Love.
When we think of personal connection, we most easily and frequently associate it with a connection in personality or worldview – someone who ‘gets’ you: your humor, the way you think, or what you do. You get a little high from the synergy of two people who understand each other on a special level.
But my cuddly grey cat Smokey has taught me a few things about connection – each of our senses is a path to our outside world, a potential bridge to another person or being.
Smokey is a cuddling machine. She wants to be held, it makes her feel loved and happy. She loves to be petted and pampered. She doesn’t know me – my deep secrets, fears, and big ambitions. It doesn’t matter. So long as we’re together, her in my embrace, life is good.
When we touch others, whether it’s a simple brush or a comforting hand, a connection is formed. A hug connects more deeply than a brush, but any touch gifts connection.
Sight and Presence
When I’m busy writing out a blog post like this one, my kitty is always nearby. If she isn’t pacing about my vicinity, she’s sitting quietly on the chair next to me. The only thing she wants is to see me and be with me.
The next time you go from home alone to a public gathering, make note of your awareness of others. How does it feel to simply be in the presence of other people? Though they are strangers to you, you all share that space and moment in time together.
In our closest relationships, we often want to share everything – every thought and action we’ve had and done. We consider the sharing of our souls an expression of love and connection. The secret is you don’t always have to speak to share a connection. Simply being in the same room together, perhaps doing separate activities, is enough to sense true connection. Like the public gathering, you’re sharing space and time together.
Who doesn’t love a cat’s meow? I love to hear Smokey’s voice – it’s unique, all hers, and she’s calling out to me. I talk to her too – I tell her I love her, that she’s cute, and I ask her what’s wrong if she’s frazzled. I don’t know how much she understands, but if I can decipher some part of her meow, I’m guessing she knows a little of what I’m telling her as well.
Sometimes we feel conversation has to be great, deep, heart-wrenching, or brimming with wit. It’s a validation of both ourselves and the other person. But you can tell a lot from the way a person speaks – confidence, personality, and wit can all come through. And it doesn’t have to have anything to do with what they’re really saying.
Conversation can be simple – a sharing of insights on the weather, the history of a place, a joke about your coffee – and you can tell whether or not you like this person, whether or not a human connection is formed. Though you may not be soul-mates, you certainly aren’t strangers anymore.
Cats are always sniffing about. It’s through their sense of smell that they come to know you – where you’ve been and what you’ve seen and touched.
Someone once told me that people with similar smells get along the best. So the next time someone naturally smells good to you, take it as a sign that you’ve got a special little connection going. Perhaps following a scent will really lead you to your soul-mate.
I confess I’ve only licked my cat once, and a mouth full of fur can be a little traumatizing. But she licks me sometimes, and other cats have obsessively licked me to show their love.
Perhaps taste is a more intimate connection, one reserved for a romantic partner. I would never tell you to go lick your best friend’s arm to show you love him or her. I doubt it would really help move your relationship forward. On the other hand, sharing a deep French kiss with your lover generates a profound sense of connection. If you don’t like your partner’s taste, I imagine it wasn’t meant to be.
What do you think? Have you experienced these connections?
This post is dedicated to my cat Smokey, for teaching me how to connect with my senses.
A Note from Sandra: Lynn was recently highlighted among 40 Bloggers to Watch in 2011 by ProBlogger. This is well deserved praise! I’m an avid reader of Upcycled Love myself.
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