Tuesday, April 14, 2009

attachments

“We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us something is valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch. Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit.”
ee cummings

I was wondering lately about the concept of attachment. It seems that most of what I've read rings with negative vibes. If one attaches to iconic beliefs, one sees the world through a myopic filter. In order to find self, one has to detach. To many, it seems that the idea of attachment reflects a leech-like one sided existance......of dependence and blindness.....of selfish need fulfillment. This surprised me. I hadn't looked at the meaning of attachment in this way. Rather, my thoughts led me in the opposite direction.
Sure, we become attached to material possessions. How many times do we say or hear, " I can't live without my...." Yes, we can easily become dependent on a belief system that lacks the fluid opportunities to question and challenge it. It's easier to swallow a message from the Bible whole rather than find the confidence to boldly question it. Relationships too can become one-sided, when needs of one consistently far outweigh the needs of another or when one person in the relationship displays control tactics in a power play. We all struggle with these unhealthy attachments as we figure out a way to balance and fairness. It's all part of life's learning....life's journey.
I want to look at attachment in a healthier sense because to me, it represents fellowship and belonging. Healthy attachments reflect mutual affection........an affinity of like minds. Healthy attachments can offer new insights of who we are, and how we are perceived and what our value is to this world. Possibly producing snippets of self- revelation. It is a bonding between two individuals or a connection to a place of worship, or to a community that allows one to find the confidence to show a vulnerable side. It allows one to feel an open-hearted sense of being able to show true colours thereby feeling accepted no matter what. The strings of attachment, when the feelings of affinity flow back and forth, are wrapped in acceptance and self-confidence. We are then able to strive for personal independence. Affirmation and attachment are the foundation to build on our independence. WE need love and belonging as much as we need air to breathe.
There are times when the balance of a friendship tips......personal circumstances pull on the strings in one way. Need for reassurance, need for more understanding, more commitment, more attention puts pressure on the relationship. It alters the role each person may have assumed in the attachment. Sometimes it's difficult to know how to help or to know how to ask for help. It may be new territory, especially if the friendship is newly forming, or if the needs are deep.Questions from both parties can arise, on both sides of the attachment, felt stronger when there is a unique sense of kindredness one doesn't find just anywhere.........

What does this person want from me?
How can I reach out to help this person without being misperceived?
How can I explain my pain and anguish to another when I can't even describe it to myself?
Why is this person reaching out to me when I have nothing to give in return?
Is there an underlying reason why this person would want to help me?
How worthy am I?
Are there strings attached to this person's desire to help me?
When it comes to connecting with new people in our lives, we are often untrusting beings arent we? Unconditional acceptance is a foreign entity in our lives, expecially if one has been burned before by someone who at face value seemed to be offering an open heart but then trumped you with a different agenda. And, yet unconditional acceptance, where harsh judgement plays no role, does exist between two people. It's a hard climb to make, but well worth it because these types of attachments.....this kinship is the most satisfyingly rich than any other.
Vulnerability, self-doubt, pain and confusion can easily block the questions from being posed. However, if the attachment is based on mutual admiration, on desire to give and take, on the awareness that the friendship can offer both enlightenment and personal growth, the questions need to be asked.........and answered........feeding the depth of affinity and feeding confidence in the reliability of the other person.
All relationships shift, all friendships breathe Commitment to making it work, to wanting to learn more about ourselves, desire to giving and receiving, and the expression of words allow attachments to flourish. Both parties must see the gift, and must want to take the risk to learn to trust to make it work.
No one likes to feel like a misfit. No one wants to feel lonely. We do want to be understood, accepted, loved, nutured.............no matter how large the scars are. We all need unconditional love provided through healthy attachments to thrive to feel alive. It's very real...........
***I wrote this piece a couple of years ago and reread it last night with new and different eyes. So, I thought I'd repost it again. Maybe there are new eyes out there too.

8 comments:

Independent Chick said...

Oh Dana...I'm just going to say you wrote it for me. ; )

I have read and re-read this piece a few times this morning. WOW!

This..."However, if the attachment is based on mutual admiration, on desire to give and take, on the awareness that the friendship can offer both enlightenment and personal growth, the questions need to be asked.........and answered........feeding the depth of affinity and feeding confidence in the reliability of the other person."

The reliability of the other person. THAT'S WHAT IT'S ALL ABOUT. That is the foundation and the key. From that, all else will fall into place because the trust can be there.

And the other line, "No one likes to feel like a misfit." I think with me it's that but also, I don't want to be the ass. The one who was vulnerable and honest and out there and then end up being used by someone who doesn't respect my feelings.

Brillant post...brillant. Thank you.

much2ponder said...

"It is a bonding between two individuals or a connection to a place of worship, or to a community that allows one to find the confidence to show a vulnerable side. It allows one to feel an open-hearted sense of being able to show true colours thereby feeling accepted no matter what. The strings of attachment, when the feelings of affinity flow back and forth, are wrapped in acceptance and self-confidence."

This is the part that really struck me because it is so true. Sometimes we can't see our own strengths until we see them through the eyes of another person and that too gives us courage to step out and try things.

Good post Dana:)

Awareness said...

Stacey....Its a true original dance....both people have to learn the steps dont they....and take the time to practise them as well.

I think we've all been burned and come away feeling like the ass. And the feeling of rejection hurts so deeply. but, it does soften and heal....(I hope.....as I think of where i have to personally head!!!) and when it does, the desire to seek out again will be strong. I hope. :)

m2p...though you can't MAKE anyone see their beauty, but we most definately reflect it.....our friends and family who love us represent what is good in ourselves as well....what we admire them, we hope to acquire those traits in ourselves or even recognize we have them.

Romany Angel said...

I loved this post for so many reasons and especially right now Dana.


To be with someone who allows you to be who you really are without judgement, to accept you with an open heart, is the greatest gift you can be given.


I have someone in my life who has seen a side to me that few people ever have, the vulnerable me, and it's all because their trust and friendship is absolute and implacable.


Sometimes I really feel like you are in my head :)

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Much to ponder here Dana...."Attachments"....where would we be without them?? I mean...one needs to be attached to something or someone...Otherwise, what are we all doing here, being Robots?? OY VEY! LOL!

Sometimes I think there can be too much 'thinkig' about these things and not enough 'feeling', you know?

If I really stopped to try to figure out why and who and where...Well, I think it would drive me nuts....I am not against 'feeling' all this, but the figuring it all out...Well, it exhausts me! Personally, I think we should all be happy we attachments!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

That should have read:
"T think we should all be happy we HAVE Attachments....."

I stopped to figure it out and see what happened?? (lol)

Barbara(aka Layla) said...

i love this soooooooooooooo much.

i am linking here today because it sort of fits with what i planned on saying...

wow. you floor me with your insight (do Canadians use that expression?)

Awareness said...

Gypsy....maybe because our needs are pretty much universal....this particular one seems to be. I didn't realize it consciously...but must've been percieving somewhere in the back of my brain, but the whole topic became a theme of my day, both personal stuff and work related....so much so it kind of gave me the creeps.

Naomi....if I am an attachment, let me be a sexy vacuum cleaner one. :)
I agree...and am very guilty at analyzing too much. Most of the time it is the beast of counselling...trying to figure it out, but mostly its through feelings i translate stuff. There are many days when I would love to turn off my brain....like today. it's completely flooded and overtired.

Layla...thanks. I think I need to revisit old pieces every now and then and resuurect them. This one in particular seemed fresh because I was reading it from a new perspective.

ps. Yes "floored" is used here. Another that comes to mind..... "Gobsmacked" is a British term which I love, but it isn't used here at all.