We might not know we are seeking people who best enrich our lives, but somehow on a deep subconscious level we absolutely are. Whether the bond is temporary or permanent, whether it succeeds or fails, fate is simply a configuration of choices that combine with others to shape the relationships that surround us. We cannot choose our family, but we can choose our friends, and we sometimes, before we even meet them.
Plainly it isn't an exact science, despite it being a complex interaction of micro-decisions and corresponding thought; perhaps it doesn't always work and we pass by some potential soulmates like the proverbial ships in the night, never quite connecting. Then again, perhaps the system is tenacious and continues to run like a computer program on infinite loop, so that if at first you don't meet, you are drawn back together for another try.
This connection had the potential to be too special to ruin it with the hurt of misfired romantic intentions. And while half of me wanted to tear his shirt off with my teeth, I also wanted him to be in my life for the duration. I didn't want him to be the one I avoided because he'd hurt me. If I was just his friend, then I would still be blessed. If it meant swallowing my pride and being his shoulder when he got hurt, or being the one he ranted at when he was angry, I was prepared to do it with dignity.
Connection is health. And what our society does its best to disguise from us is how ordinary, how commonly attainable, health is. We lose our health - and create profitable diseases and dependences - by failing to see the direct connections between living and eating, eating and working, working and loving. In gardening, for instance, one works with the body to feed the body. The work, if it is knowledgeable, makes for excellent food. And it makes one hungry. The work thus makes eating both nourishing and joyful, not consumptive, and keeps the eater from getting fat and weak. This is health, wholeness, a source of delight. (pg.132, The Body and the Earth)
THIS IS WHYHe will never be given to wonder muchif he was the mouth for some cruel forcethat said it. But if he were(this will comfort her) less than one momentout of millions had he meant it. So many years and so many turnsthey had swerved around the subject. And he will swear for many morethe kitchen and everything in it vanished --the oak table, their guests, the refrigerator doorhe had been surely propped against--all changed to rusted ironwork and ashexcept in the center in her linen caftan: she was not touched. He remembers the silence before he spokeand her nodding a little, as if in the meat of this gray wastehere was the signalfor him to speak what they had long agreed, what somewhere they had prepared together. And this one moment in the desert of ashstretches into forever. They had been having a dinner party. She had been lonely. A friend asked her almost jokingif she had ever felt really crazy, and when she started to unwind her answerin long, lovely sentences like scarves within herhe saw this was the waythey could no longer talk together. And that is when he said it, in front of the guests, because he couldn't bear to hear her. And this is why the guests have leftand she screams as he comes near her.
Community, then, is an indispensable term in any discussion of the connection between people and land. A healthy community is a form that includes all the local things that are connected by the larger, ultimately mysterious form of the Creation. In speaking of community, then, we are speaking of a complex connection not only among human beings or between humans and their homeland but also between human economy and nature, between forest or prairie and field or orchard, and between troublesome creatures and pleasant ones. All neighbors are included. (pg. 202-203, Conservation and Local Economy)