Similarities And Differences
This is Martin. He is my family. He is part of who I am now, just as much as he was a part of who changed a much younger self of me. He has taught me that there is no point in bearing a grudge. It will only hurt me. That joy can always be found. If I look for it.
We have known each other since I left elementary school. When he would write me brain teasers to solve and listen to my worries. He still listens to my worries, teasing me when I’m likely blowing things out of proportion and helping me come up with solutions in cases that might actually be of concern. We check in with each other before boarding planes, to let the other know one is going out of state or where to look for his body if he doesn’t return (only halfway joking, some trips to another state were a bit scary). It’s been too many months since I have seen his face and I’ve been in a bit of a panic to see him before I return to Minnesota this weekend. Our schedules haven’t worked out over this past week to meet up. We have a lunch date set for next Tuesday, but I still feel unsettled. He. Is my people. I find I spend much of my time searching out likenesses, as well as differences. I find them both intriguing. At the core, I think we are all more alike than different. We each want to be appreciated and loved. When I find little things that link me to another in small preferences, whether it’s how neurotic I am about putting twist ties back on bags in a certain direction, alphabetizing my spices, books, and movies (OCD much?), or just finding the quickest and most efficient way to complete a task like squeegeeing shower doors (ever read Cheaper by the Dozen?)…it makes me feel less alone. But it’s the differences that pull me in. And make me wonder, “Why?” Or if there’s even a reason for why one person likes big dogs versus small dogs. What makes a particular feature more attractive to one person and not at all to another. Why is one person content to play a victim when another will fight to be the strong and win over the title of survivor? In many ways, my husband and I are quite alike. Our thoughts on parenting are more often aligned than not. We agree on home furnishings, hotels over camping (I like running hot water, bathrooms with doors and beds over sleeping on the ground and peeing behind trees. He is also on board with running water, doors and beds, but enjoys doling out life lessons to the boy child like, “Don’t pee into the wind.”), big dogs over small and taking time to feed our souls and dreams. However, he accuses me of ruining our children with a love for hippie folk music from the 60s and 70s while he is enjoying a love for rap and other equally awful music with our boy child. I need music I can understand the words and sing along with while my honeys is more concerned with the beat and ignores the lyrics. I don’t get that. Lyrics are everything. To me. Yet, it fascinates me and I sit back and smile. I’m good with ridding the house of unwanted vertebrates, but completely freak out (screaming like a girl and interrupting his work day) over arachnids and insects. Which my honeys can calmly handle (although, he hasn’t done well with the rodents). We are a perfect pair. It is the same with my friends. Or people I am getting to know in front of my camera. Before they become friends. Perhaps this makes me a dork? I dunno. But, I find myself enjoying finding differences almost as much as our known similarities bring me comfort. I love learning about people’s pasts and how previous events shaped who they are now. While most of what I learn are not stories for me to tell, these back stories help me appreciate my people more. What similarities are most important to you? Or what differences do you think make you better?