The Possibility of Sunlight

Of another relationship I say, maybe, just maybe. But not necessary. It is the page that draws me stronger now. On relationships I stay open, never pull the blinds to the possibility of sunlight. And while there are many whose hearts are steadfast in their desire for intimacy, few can actually live it. And that is the only landscape for my stride.

There are the array of partial intimacies, connections between two people, where, like two not quite fitted puzzle pieces, some of the edges align, and for that, anyone would be wise to be grateful.

In the meantime, I am drawn to the page, to the book, and, again, finally, to the physical. The long walks, the trails, the summiting moments, to climb back on the bike and break the hills that are like weeds in their prevalence here. And again to the gym, solitary in my task, regaining the vessel’s tone.

Then to the page, the garden, the sweet air, and always with the blinds open to the possibility of sunlight.


Love. Is it the all too elusive nectar for the human soul? The base alloy of real human intimacy? The spiritual adhesive that joins lives with indelible bonds? Or, is it all of these combined and even more that rests out of the reach of words, at least out of reach of any words penned by this writer?

I do not pretend to know the answer, at least not in its entirety. I do know love is an overused word that is all too often said as ploy to get something from another human being. As a result, those who use the word love with sincerity and devotion are often not heard and not believed.

In some romantic unions, things have evolved to a place or, in some instances, always were in a place where each nothing more than a tenant in the other person’s life. In a recent blog piece I wrote about the distinction between a strategic exchange relationship and a communal relationship. The former is a relationship in which one person is seeking to get something or give something to the other in part by convincing them that the relationship is based on true intimacy. These are the relationships that dry up and grow brittle from lack of nutrition and either come to a painful end, or condemn the two people to an unhappy life because both are two afraid to claim their independence and by doing so reclaim their lives and thus reclaim themselves.

The communal relationship is the kind of relationship so many in their hearts honestly want, It is a relationship where there is real spiritual, emotional and physical intimacy. These relationships last because they have the nutrition of real love and thus real intimacy, and there is no better nutrition than that duo, at least not in this writer’s view.

But what of those who really do love someone and know they are loved in return, but cannot find a way to allow the experience, even though it is an experience the truly want and deserve? What then? I don’t know.

I don’t know how to help anyone discover they have a right to fully love and fully be loved. I don’t know how to help someone take decision making power away from their history, for it is there that the damage was done, it was there that the pain was inflicted, and it was there that the seeds of fear were sown.

What I do know about fear is that the only way to get free of it is to allow yourself to go through it. It is okay to be afraid, don’t let it scare you. And if the experience of loving someone and being loved by someone is there for you, can there be a more powerful medicine for healing from fear?

Love. There is nothing more beautiful and, if allowed its life, nothing more majestic, more nutritious and more powerful. This I believe. And I believe it with all my heart.


Fear of intimacy is an epidemic in my culture. This fear, this unkind barrier to people fully loving each other, robs so many people of the relationships they deserve – and want.

To my mind, there are three primary forms of intimacy: physical, emotional, and spiritual.

There are numerous essays and articles on the net talking about communal relationships as opposed to exchange relationships, or, as one article I ran across calls the latter, strategic exchange relationships. This latter form of relationship is highly problematic if your goal is to be in a loving intimate relationship with someone and not simply use someone for sexual or material gain.

While it seems to me the strategic exchange relationship is by far the most common relationship we see, I believe most people honestly and honorably want the communal relationship.

As I understand it, the strategic exchange relationship is a relationship where one person is seeking to get something or give something to the other in part by convincing them that the relationship is based on true intimacy. To my mind, this pattern of manipulative behavior can be driven by the subconscious as well as the conscious. According to more than one source, strategic exchange relationships are rather brittle and likely to break apart and come to an end when disagreements and differences arise.

Communal relationships, the truly emotionally, physically, and spiritually intimate relationships, are the durable ones. These relationships are far more likely to weather the storms. Their foundations are not so apt to be fractured and damaged by disagreements, differing views, and the traumas life dishes out to us all. Why? Because there is trust. There is a belief that each is their with the other person’s best interest at heart. There is a belief that neither would knowingly do nor say anything to wound or damage the other. This type of bond does not exist in the exchange relationships.

But why the exchange relationships in the first place? Why the fear of intimacy? Why the fear to trust? These fears arrive in our lives for real reasons: past wounds, betrayals, abuse of all kinds endured as children, or adults for that matter.

In other words, it’s our histories. Components of our histories provide the biggest obstacles to our ever realizing the kind of communal relationships so many deeply and sincerely long for.

So, here’s a thought to take with you. Who deserves to be in charge of your ability to be in the kind of communal relationship your heart desires? You or your history? I say, you.

The thing is, when the fear arrives, when your history raises its hideous head in an attempt to derail you, talk to the person you are with about your fears. If they listen, you are in good stead. One other thing, let them talk, and when they do, listen to them. Listen to each other; don’t judge each other.

And for god sakes, don’t forget to hold each other.