Touching

Last night, while reading and sipping some wine, I started thinking about my life…why I love it and what might be missing. I decided that the life I am living right now is almost perfect.

I have never felt stronger, both emotionally and physically. I continue to learn new things everyday that help me to be the best me that I can be. I spend the majority of every day doing things that bring me both great joy and tremendous satisfaction. I laugh so much every day that people comment on how my laughter makes them happier. I have the most wonderful people in my life, people who bring joy to my life and allow me to add joy to their lives. I live in a building that is so much more than a place to live. It is a community where we all take care of each other. We are never alone unless we choose to be alone. I feel loved and appreciated. I have enough money to do the things I really want to do, although not enough to ensure that my son and his children have no money worries. But that will come in time.

So, what am I missing that would make my life better? That is the question I was pondering last night. I put my book down and grabbed my iPad. I started writing a poem about “Touch” when I realized that the only thing lacking in my life right now is being touched by another person. I don’t think I realized until last night just how much all of us need to be touched.

I am NOT talking about sex. I am talking about simple physical touch…a hug, a pat on the back, a touch on the arm or hand by a person you are with at the time. Everybody needs this physical connection. Most of get this in some form or another, whether it be with friends of either sex, or even strangers, when meeting for the first time. It lets us know that we are alive. This is good. But is it enough? That’s the question I have been asking myself recently.

Although I have many wonderful friends, some of them genuine “huggers”, I think that I, personally, need more touching than I am getting from them. Again, I am not talking about sex. I am talking about having someone “special” whose touch makes us keenly aware of the amazing power of touch to transform us, to release emotions we might otherwise keep bottled up inside. I need to know that someone cares enough to touch me.

I am not negating the value of meaningful sexual experiences. I remember those well and think that it might be nice to be able to experience them again. But for now, I just need to feel “connected” in the physical sense.

This need I have to find that someone who can give me the kind of connection I desire right now has led me to rejoin some dating websites. I have to laugh to myself about this because in the 10 years that I have intermittently been part of these sites, I have only met two people. The first was the man I thought might be the great love of my life. Unfortunately, over four years into the relationship I realized he was not who I thought he was.

The second man I met through the dating website turned out to be a wonderful friend. We remain friends today and enjoy each other’s company, but there is no physical connection.

I realized last night that I was on these sites mainly to see what men were writing about themselves and what they were looking for in their relationships. I am continually amazed at the photos these men post. Many of them, deciding they don’t look their best in “selfies” take their photos in their bathrooms, looking into the mirror. The stories some of those photos tell is enough to convince me that I would never want to share a bathroom with most of them. Some men post photos of themselves bare-chested, trying to look sexy and usually looking ridiculous. I even came across a few pictures of men in hospital beds with oxygen masks on. I am not sure what they were hoping to find…but I think they were probably looking for nurses with purses.

Many people do not post any photos at all. That makes me wonder why or what they are trying to hide. I do not think that a person’s appearance should be anywhere near the top of the list of what is important to us. But in all honestly, when meeting anyone, of either sex, for the first time, not knowing them at all, don’t we all make some judgement based on how they look? It’s not just their physical features but also how they dress and comport themselves.

The other thing that really interests me on the profiles of the men on dating websites is what they write about themselves and what they are looking for in a relationship. I look for humour, wit and intelligence. I look to see that they are not needy or desperate. Do they want someone to take care of them? Do they want someone who needs to be taken care of or protected? Or do they want someone who can add joy to their lives while adding joy to yours?

Being who I am (a woman of words) I wrote a very long profile (I actually wanted to write more but was only allowed a certain number of characters) letting people know exactly what I want from a relationship. I let them know that I am a strong, independent, joyful, smart woman who loves her life and does not need a man. I would like a man in my life, but I will never settle for less than what I want because I am terrific on my own. Apparently, men do not want to hear this. It scares the shit out of them!

In many ways I find all this amusing. In other ways I find it annoying. And in some ways I find it terribly sad. I think that many women have a much easier time being on their own than most men do. I am not sure why this is so, but from my experience, it seems to be true.

Last night, I decided that it is utterly ridiculous for me to pay money to look at men’s photos and read their profiles and never actually even want to communicate with most of them. So, I cancelled the auto-renewals and am closing that chapter of my life.

I have no doubt that I will find exactly the relationship I want on my own. Until that happens, I am going to go on with this beautiful, amazing, joyful life I live. I am going to initiate “touching” with the many wonderful people in my life. I am going to be grateful for the relationships I have now and will have in the future.

I can do this because I know that I am terrific, just as I am. And for the record, so are YOU!!!

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