Friday, 17 April 2015

Connection

Brene Brown defines connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship. 

I am struggling with connection right now.  

There are so many types of relationships...parent/child, friends, family, co-workers, lovers, partners, etc.  But we don't always connect - right? 

Family for example.  You don't get to choose your family but you do get to choose whether you want to put out the effort to stay connected to them after you become an adult.  When I was younger, I didn't think much about family.  My aunts and uncles, cousins and grandparents--they were always around. But as an adult, I spun off into my own nuclear unit and family, outside my own housefull faded into the background.

I think it was because I didn't want to need people.  People, will disappoint you. Harden your heart so you don't need them and then you have less to fear.  

Co-workers.  Oddly enough, because our paycheque rides on it, I think we work harder to connect with the people we work with more than our family.  At least in my experience.  Well, except the judgement part.  Judgment is the performance review of the connection!  

Family and Co-Workers, I can see where I fall short.  Therapy, if nothing else, has helped me follow the thread back to where my fear of connection comes from.  

It's a bit like finally assembling the Lego Death Star, never having seen Star Wars--by listening to someone describe how to do it over the phone---and upon completion---not knowing what you are going to do with it now that it is done!  It's great! It's an achievement!  You now know what a Death Star is...but if you want to do anything with it, you have to write down all the instructions, backwards, as you UN assemble it --and that just seems like too much work.

Which brings me to the tip of my current work in progress---friendship.  

I have one friend, Auntie 'Lell---who I have known since I was five.  No matter where we lived or what we did ow who we were with, we always connected....Brene Brown connected....Brenected?

And there is of course Sista.  We connect.  And it is Ka-POW awesome.  

And while I get it takes effort to maintain a friendship -- connection doesn't.  It is there or it isn't.  

But sometimes, you connect with someone, and then you don't.  And what I am trying to figure out is what happens?  

I am specifically thinking of a friend I had through part of elementary school and who was my BFF all the way up through most of my University life.  We connected.  We just did.   

And then we didn't.

I am sure at the time, I could have rattled off a laundry list of petty reasons why I literally STOPPED returning her phone calls---I see now it really does come down to not feeling seen, heard, and valued. and no longer deriving sustenance and strength from the relationship.  Somewhere along the line, I guess there was a tipping point.

But with Sista and Auntie 'Lell we connect.  Will there be a time we don't?  Is there a tipping point in these relationships?  I guess for me, yes.  Yes there is. 

Pleasing people was not big on my list --again, I followed that thread, I build my Death Star---so I guess I would let them go.  I try not to hold on to broken things.  Fix them or get new ones.

Which leads me to the real crux of where I am at right now.  But not with Sista or Family or Co-Workers or Auntie 'Lell...and not with Youngest or Middle or Oldest.....

Connection is the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship. 

Fix it or get a new one.  I try not to hold on to broken things.......








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