What Comes After the End of Wanting?


Empty Bed in a Barn by Marlene KellyEver since I can remember, I’ve had a crush on someone. Some scruffy-haired blonde boy, the quiet kind tall guy, the bad boy, the good guy with a girlfriend, the drummer, the alcoholic, the electrician, the chef, the poet–there’s always been a place for these dreamy, hope-filled feelings to land. Whether we dated or not, lived together or not, loved each other or not, there’s been a man to contemplate the possibility of, the middle of or the ending of love.

Until now. This is the first time I don’t have one. I don’t even have a possible someone to entertain. Perhaps, it’s the lack of options. Or maybe, I’ve been too distracted to notice. Perhaps, I want too much. Or maybe, I forgot how to want.

Wanting is a big part of the swooning process of having a crush. Wanting to be close, wanting to be seen, wanting to give the heart away and wanting to be loved. I don’t know what I want anymore. Well, that’s not exactly true. I don’t know what I want right now.

So, I’m in a holding pattern. I’m an overdue flight waiting for takeoff, hanging on the tarmac with my seatbelt on and my electronic devices turned off.

It’s simple, really. I’ve been on a single trajectory and the other side of the bed has been filled with lust, love, laughter, snoring, farting, heartbreak and disappointment.  But right now, a furry, purring cat has staked her claim.

I think the song Nada Surf: Concrete Bed (Live) perfectly applies.

“The world’s locked up in your head
You’ve been pouring it a concrete bed
Your habits ossify
You don’t realize you’re fried
To find someone you love
You’ve gotta be someone you love
The reason’s somewhere in the din
But it takes years ’til it sinks in
You’ve used up the easy streets
And you lost your taste for treats
So fried
Stay high if you have to
Do whatever it asks you
You’ve got another calling
Don’t let it pass you
You know it coz you wrote it
You just didn’t think you’d actually do it
It’s just another wish you wished
In a very long list
To find someone you love
You’ve gotta call your own bluff.”

I’m fried. I’m sick of the waiting. I want to get on with it. But there’s no one and nowhere to get on with. It’s just the life to be lived in the moment. And the moment feels like a blown-out candle. A small strand of smoke swirling up, the only reminder that it was lit once. Once, it burned bright. Once, it burned me.

This feeling is the process of separation and suffering that all of humanity will experience at some point in their lives and all great spiritual teachers try to address. When the psyche categorizes time as a quantifiable object that really exists. When the ego defines love as something you can have or someone you do not have.

These processes, categorizations and definitions are illusions. Life is so much bigger than our internalized perspective on it. I am never alone, just as you are never alone. How do I know this to be true, even in the midst of feeling lonely? As I am writing this feeling out, if you are feeling it too, then we are together. Whether in the moment it was written or the moment it was read, we are connected.

You’ve seen inside my heart and I’ve mined that space deep inside of me enough to see inside of yours. That is the tiny seed of love, so much bigger than a passing crush or one-night stand. But, if you are more focused on whether or not you can fuck this moment, then the moment is a mind-fuck on you. So, even in that, we are mind-fucked together. Satisfying, right?

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