“Blessed is the influence of one true, loving human soul on another.”
– George Eliot, author
“… but was gone for weeks at a time…”
Vivienne was a tall woman with short red hair about 30 years old. She was big boned and lean as if she had worked hard all her life. She was a short order cook in a local restaurant, but only took shifts when her kids were in school. Vivienne had been doing this for a number of years. She and Valen, her partner, had two children Vera, aged 8 years and Veronica, aged 5 years.
Vivienne said she liked her job because it was fast paced and she had great coworkers. She noted there was a strong team spirit at the restaurant and they had lots of fun while working hard to meet the demands of a dedicated, but at times impatient, owner.
Vivienne said she came to see me because of her relationship to Valen. He worked out west and had been doing so for a number of years. She said Valen made good money but was gone for weeks at a time and she struggled with that… a lot!
When I asked her what was the most difficult part of their decision to adopt this lifestyle of him being away for long periods and she working and caring for the children on her own much of the time?
“I really feel like I have no sex life at all!”
“Ken, with our combined income, we have a nice lifestyle in terms of our home and the things we can provide for the kids. And, when we’re together we try to make up for lost time. But, with the kids…they are just as excited to see their Dad as I am, so there’s not a lot of privacy most of the time.”
She paused here before continuing,
“But, when he is away, I’m so lonely! I really feel like I have no sex life at all! And, it’s starting to get to me…I’m starting to resent him when he’s gone and push him away when he is here!”
“Vivienne, what is it that you miss the most?” I asked getting her to peel the onion of her awareness to its core.
She paused again before replying,
“I really think it’s what I said earlier…I feel like I have no sex life at all!”
“What is the most important part of your sex life for you, Vivienne? Is it the physical part or the emotional part or both…what is it you are most missing when Valen is away?”
“The physical part, the sex…my orgasms are great. But, I can get those when he is away with solo sex or even phone sex with him, which we do occasionally. The part I miss most is the intimacy we share, the closeness with another human being. That’s the part most important to me and missing the most!”
“But, what if I don’t want new forms of intimacy, Ken?”
“Can I offer you a few ideas to consider, Vivienne?”
“This self sustaining universe we all live in and the solar system which is a part of it is estimated to be over 400 billion years old. And, scientists say they haven’t found any gaps in it…at least so far.”
“What’s that got to do with my sex life, Ken?”
“Quite a bit actually! Scientists also tell us we can’t create any gaps, either…we really can’t destroy or create anything. We can only do one thing in this universe…transform some form of energy into another form of energy!”
“And, what does that have to do with my sex life, Ken?” she said smiling, wondering where this was going.
“Again, quite a bit! This means, in the dimensions of human relationships, you can’t really lose intimacy. Instead, your old form of intimacy has been transformed into new forms of intimacy.” I suggested to her.
“But, what if I don’t want new forms of intimacy, Ken?”
“That’s the perfect beauty of nature, the new forms must counterbalance the old forms within your values…no exceptions!”
“Every living being is an engine geared to the wheel work of the universe. Though seemingly affected only by its immediate surrounding, the sphere of external influence extends to infinite distance.”
– Nikola Tesla, inventor
“… but I can help you prove it to yourself!”
“Are you telling me the new forms of intimacy must equilibrate the old forms every time?”
“Yep! Each and every time, Vivienne!”
“That’s hard to believe…but, tell me more because I keep asking myself why have I put up with this situation for so long!”
“Mother Nature ensures at every second of a person’s life they have a symmetrical and synchronic experience of balance…in other words, a person must always experience equal amounts of support and challenge, pleasure and pain or gain and loss at every second!”
“That sounds kind of cool, but I will need you to prove it to me, Ken!” she said with a tone of cautious skepticism.
“I can’t prove it to you Vivienne, but I can help you prove it to yourself! Does the interest you?”
“For sure! Fire away!”
“Close your eyes and be there right now!”
“I’d like you to remember that second in your past when you felt the most like you were missing, that special intimacy, with Valen. When and where did it occur? Describe the scene in detail for me, please?”
I watched her close her eyes and relax a bit in her chair as she tracked through her memories. After a short bit she popped her eyes open again saying,
“OK, I got it!”
“Great! Tell me about that second, Vivienne.”
“It was last Saturday night about 8:30 PM. I had just gotten the kids down to bed for the night. It had been a busy day with supper at their grandparents. We were all tired and they went down easily… after a quick story, of course.” she said smiling.
“And Valen is away, correct?” I asked to clarify the details.
“Yes, he had been gone for about a week at that point. I was in our living room on the couch, looking for a movie to watch on Netflix. As I was searching I realized he wasn’t beside me giving his opinion of what to choose…that’s when I missed his presence, our intimacy!” she said, her eyes glinting a bit with emotion.
“Now, I want you to go back to that second in your mind’s eye. Close your eyes and be there right now!”
Then I continued,
“There are actually at least seven different forms of intimacy we can experience, each within one of the seven areas of our life. Physical intimacy could take the form of sexual intercourse or cuddling or spooning and so on. Spiritual intimacy could take the form of being in nature or praying or meditating and so on. Does that make sense, so far Vivienne?” I asked.
“Yes…sort of! Would you give me some more examples, Ken?”
“Sure! Let me offer you examples in the other areas. Mental intimacy could take some form of self appreciation like patting yourself on the back or noticing something you accomplished. Vocational intimacy could be analyzing a work problem and finding a solution or detailing a dream you have about the future. Financial intimacy might be figuring out how you are going to buy something or pay off a bill, perhaps. Are you still with me, Vivienne?”
“When you hold your baby in your arms the first time… it’s a tremendous responsibility. What you do with him can influence not only him, but everyone he meets and not for a day or a month or a year but for time and eternity.” – Rose Kennedy, author
“…the symmetry, the synchronicity of each second.”
“Yes, I think I’m getting the idea. But keep going!”
“Social intimacy might be making a plan to call a friend or send someone a birthday card…things like that. Familial intimacy might be noticing and appreciating the bond between you and your children or you and your parents. These are all just different forms of intimacy.” I added.
“And, you are saying the kind of intimacy I was missing…which is probably, mostly familial with regards to Valen, was replaced by a counterbalance of other forms, at that very second…is that the idea, Ken”
“You’ve expressed it perfectly, Vivienne!” I said smiling at her.
“So, return to that very second you identified…being on your couch in your living room, searching Netflix and missing Valen’s intimacy…what were the other forms of intimacy that you were experiencing at the same second which counterbalanced that second?”
Vivienne closed her eyes again and sat back in her chair. I could see the movement of her eyes under her lids. I waited quietly for her to uncover the truth of her life…the truth of everyone’s life…the symmetry, the synchronicity of each second.
“I remember I was really appreciating how well the kids had gone down to bed that evening…how close I am to them…closer to them than Valen, which he notices.”
“And…?” I said encouragingly.
“And also, how my Mom and Dad have really stepped in to help when Valen is away. And, how I get to be the Mom I have always wanted to be. And, even how fortunate I am to have my coworkers and a boss who respects my need to be home with our kids.”
“… an even deeper understanding of the perfection of your life…”
“Vivienne, can you see the other forms of intimacy which were there counterbalancing the one you were missing?”
“Yes, yes I do, Ken! Because a part of me knows I have gotten closer to our children…closer to my parents…even closer to a friend at work…all just other forms of intimacy I hadn’t been noticing were there at the same time!” she replied.
“While this is profound in itself, let me offer you an even deeper understanding of the perfection of your life, Vivienne. Given your highest values, would you give up those forms of intimacy if you could have gotten the other form with Valen, at that second?”
She never missed a beat in replying,
“Not a chance! At that second it was perfect for me! I can see that now, clearly! I do have a sex life, I do have intimacy in my life…and not just with Valen, but also with my kids, my parents, my friends…!”
“So, there was no mistake at that second in your life, no mistake in Valen being away, you being at home, the kids being in bed, your parents being in their home and so on?”
“No mistakes at all! I get it, Ken! Very cool! Very cool!”
“And, what if you can apply it to any moment of your life Vivienne?”
“I can see I have more seconds in my life to look at more carefully, eh?” she said smiling.
“We all do, Vivienne!” I said returning her smile.
“Each individual affects eternity; one can never tell where the influence stops.”
– King Ayles, author
Until Next time…
Now you know, sexual intercourse is only one way we spread our love and our influence on our species and on this planet. There are at least seven different ways of influencing our surroundings and each one contributes significantly. It will drive your level of gratitude for yourself and your life when you can identify them and appreciate them daily!
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