Thursday, March 3, 2011

Passion in Light of Absence


It’s something really unimportant/trivial, but it came up in my thoughts today after a lunch hour spent playing MvC3 against a stranger at Gamestop followed by reading a YA Supernatural novel in the ‘break room’ while my soup grew cold. It wasn’t until I read the phrase:
 Absence diminishes mediocre passions and increases great ones” - Francois de La Rochefoucauld
(and then looked it up and read the full thing) that I realized that that’s a sentiment I’ve been missing in my life.
          That sounds rather dramatic, I know, but I’ve always been really dissatisfied by the common sayings “absence makes the heart grow fonder” and “out of sight, out of mind” because I did not understand how both of them could be possible. At the same time, I knew that neither one solely applied to everyone so could never pick which one I actually believed. As someone who is truly sensitive and emotional (though I do my best to not show it) I needed something to help me understand the longing that would rise up in me whenever I left New York, my friends, the boy I loved; the hole that I felt inside whenever the plane would take off.
          I get emotionally attached to people, so I tended to automatically lean towards the idea that my heart grew fonder in those scenarios, but I didn’t understand how it wasn’t always a shared sentiment, how that excitement, the pure joy that I felt was radiating off of me when I saw even my not-so-close friends wasn’t something that they felt back. It’s not like they weren’t happen to see friends who had been gone, it’s just that it did not make a difference to them either, they were ambivalent.
          But reading this, as silly as it may sound, made everything fall into place nice and softly. I realized that those people who shared those sentiments, who I feel genuine love towards, feel the same and our affections for each other have only grown. They’re the people who understand my slight separation anxiety tendencies which mingle with my hatred for feeling suffocated or controlled or like I’m not making my own decisions. I want to want to miss people, not feel like if I don’t then something is wrong with me and especially not that me missing them is a misplaced affection.
          I’m slowly waiting for residual mediocre passions and one seemingly time-and-element-proof destructive great passion to diminish into nothingness, so that I can fully enjoy the colossal flames of my friendships that are engulfing my spirit, and keeping it nice and warm.