voices

To date,  my closest friends came at the most integral points of my life.

High school – one friend
University – two friends
First (real) job – one friend
Second job – one friend

Five friends.

Just so you know, these friends aren’t constant. They blow in for a visit, stay for a while, then they blow out again.

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about relationships. Trying to make sense of them.

Let me explain and perhaps you’ll find that it’s the same with you. At certain times in my life, a specific friendship assumes more importance than any other. This friend is the person I share everything with. I listen to their dreams, thoughts, fears and hopes and in turn, share mine. At that point, I can’t imagine another friendship assuming more importance than the one I’m currently immersed in.

For you, maybe this happens with romantic relationships. During this time, you may come down with a virus called “name-itis”. What is “name-itis” you ask? Well – name-itis happens when you become so caught up with someone else that all you do is mention their name.
Y said the funniest thing.
Y was telling me that….
Y did ….!

Hey, don’t be embarrassed! We’ve all been there.

Then – the unimaginable happens.

Something flippant is said. Something happens. And suddenly my feelings are under assault. My friend has packed their suitcase and it’s now standing by the door.

The question is, did I see them differently from how they saw me? Was this friendship more meaningful to me than to them?

After shifting the focus on my lens, I become acutely aware that we are, in fact,  two separate people, not sharing one mind, thoughts, and forevers as I’d believed. I’m also acutely aware that  I am, in fact, very much an island.

Coffee for one, please.

Oddly enough, this phenomenon is also true for children. As children, we’re fickle when it comes to whom we love and hate. But as adults, are we truly different? Sure, we learn skills that make us more able to listen and make bygones out of hurts. But we’re not really that different.

Recently, someone told me (and this was how I interpreted what they said) that everyone has multiple “voices”. During a lifetime, we may only ever witness one voice from a friend. It’s the voice we grow to know, the voice we associate with them. But it’s not their only voice. Imagine the surprise when we find that someone who’s always been supportive of us, and complimentary is nit-picky and critical towards someone else. 

So, when their suitcase is packed and waiting  by the door, don’t be upset.  They haven’t changed.  Just assume you’re hearing another voice of theirs.  Or consider that their suitcase is packed because they heard another voice of yours.

14 Comments Add yours

  1. sbacchus1410 says:

    Very thought provoking to say the least but coexistence need acceptance and the ability to be what we expect from others. It is unfair to want perfection while we are still missing the mark. It boils down simply to understanding sometimes you get what you want and other times you get a lesson in patience, timing, alignment, empathy, compassion, faith, resilience, perseverance, humility, trust, meaning, awareness, and resistance, purpose, clarity, grief, beauty and most of life. Either way, you win.

    Like

    1. Lisi-Tana says:

      I agree with everything you wrote about coexistence. However, I do think that sometimes it’s not possible to coexist simply because that other person has moved on – moved beyond you. Maybe you realise that you too have outgrown someone.

      Here’s a question for you, sbacchus1410. Would you prefer to keep a relationship alive that is floundering or to let that relationship go?

      Like

      1. sbacchus1410 says:

        I concur Lisi that sometimes it’s better to know the difference between staying the course or moving on. Relationships have a lot less to do with staying with the right person than it has to do with doing the right things with the person you’re with. Clearly it has to be reciprocal so if your investment in a relationship have zero yields then it time to bid adieu.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. ottmar says:

    I think each person carries many voices in them. When you meet them you may notice one of those voices, the one that dominates at that moment, and perhaps one that resonates with you. You become friends and you think they ARE that voice, but it’s just one of several. Later you notice their voice has changed. That doesn’t make the original meeting less beautiful. It only means that you hadn’t seen the whole person, you hadn’t met the other voices yet.

    How many voices reside in each of us? A handful, a few dozen, perhaps even hundreds?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Lisi-Tana says:

      I think you said that far more articulately and more beautifully than i did. That’s what I *wanted* to say. 😉 Thank you.

      Perhaps relationships end when we discover that the other voices we encounter aren’t voices we are equipped to hear – perhaps they are too loud, too forceful, too quiet. We have to accept it and move on, I guess.

      A personal challenge for me would be to think about my different voices and see what brings each one out.

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      1. ottmar says:

        When we think about our own voices we should remember that one of those voices could be the master of the choir, who listens to the voice of fear and the voice of wild adventure and the voice of uncertainty and decides which one we should follow. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Lisi-Tana says:

        It’s very true.

        It’s definitely something to think about.

        Let’s say someone discovers the master voice is not one they like / want to be the master. How does one allow a new voice to be the master?

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    2. lujuanwang0853234 says:

      Hello Ottmar. I have the same thinking. I’ve heard the saying that if you like this person, accept him/her all. I think it means what you said that the whole person and hundreds of voices. PS:I love your music so much!! Thank you for creating beautiful music for the world.

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      1. ottmar says:

        Thank you, Lulu. I am glad you enjoy the music.

        Perhaps that’s true for accepting teachers – swallow the whole fish and then later spit out the bones – but I think it’s okay, and perhaps even important, to be able to tell a friend to control their talking loudly voice or the bad joke voice. Isn’t that just part of growing together and adapting to one another?

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      2. Yes! What you describe is very appropriate. It is a very happy thing to learn and grow together with the people around you.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear. Your writing made me think a lot again. I want to share a lot of my thinking and my feeling. I have the same problem as you. I had the closest friend in my high school. At that time, we stayed together all the time like twins. However, when we went to different universities and worked in different cities. Our contact gradually less and less. I was so sad when we lost touch with each other. After I watched a Korean drama named “My Lovely Samsoon”, there was a line ” Going to love, just like today is the last day of life.” After seeing this, I told to myself just be myself, regardless of others. Regardless of the future relationship, just enjoy the precious friendship of the present, just like leaving tomorrow. Some people are passers-by in your life after all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lisi-Tana says:

      Lulu – this is why I think we’re kindred spirits. You get it!

      It’s a hard thing to come to terms with when someone we care about grows away from us. However maybe some people are (as you said so beautifully) passers-by in our lives. It’s possible that they visit us at a specific time for a specific reason. When they leave, we shouldn’t be sad. We should look at that time as a bookmark in our life.

      Like

  4. Amna Mohamed says:

    Am I right in thinking that this post is cathartic?
    If so, it is a good thing. You have finally learned a life lesson – how to let go.
    I want to think that this person’s
    (whoever it is) suitcase was packed a long time ago but you either ignored it or unpacked it for a longer stay.
    You are one of the most loyal persons I know and you value your friendships, would do almost anything for those friends. A friend’s defection hurts, but you must know that an unequal friendship will cause pain as you have now realized.
    You have now found another voice, one that will heal your pain and be heard by other friends.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Lisi-Tana says:

      Aww…thanks.
      I think an unequal ANYTHING hurts. Shoes that are unequal heights for example 🙂

      In general, perhaps we should never place too much stock in any one relationship since that relationship could end up disappointing you…and then whose fault will it be?

      Like

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