the laid.back Buddhist has MOVED...back!

Saturday, September 29

Thrill of the Ride

It’s really scary, this thing…this wonderful feeling, which they call love.

They tell me that it’s not that scary when it happens. That it’s a relief, such a beautiful gift to receive when you meet the person who will totally accept you, in every aspect and with every respect. Unabashedly.

It’s not that I don’t agree or that I don’t see what they mean.

I do, perhaps too well. Which can be a problem.

I liken it to the first time I went rock-climbing back in May and discovered what it meant “to repel.” Snugly strapped into my harness and slower than a snail, I inched backwards at the top of a cliff overlooking the Potomac River in Washington, DC. They’re telling me that I’m secure. That I just need to trust myself and keep going until the rope catches the extra slack.

Well, I could see that quite clearly…

However, it was the whole getting to THAT point which sent the panicked butterflies in my stomach crashing into mass disarray. Which made me hesitate. You see, until that point of security, I’m just hanging out there—suspended in midair without any support whatsoever—over this cliff with 75 feet of open air between my back and the ground way, way down below. Trying to squeeze in some breath between my jangled nerves, I’m babbling like an idiot until I finally feel rope catch me.

But once I know that I am almost secure, I’m already more than ready to let go. In fact, I can’t flippin’ wait to let go, to feel unstoppable as I rush down towards the earth.

In other words, I’m like Spiderman but with the hot sensation of rope-burn stinging my right palm.

So it’s not that I’m afraid. Even though I often admit to fear falling in love. It’s not that I don’t understand. Even though I remain continually amazed by how generously my friends accept me and all my impulsive weirdness in its entirety. It’s that I tire of all the continual tenseness I tend to make myself feel. Though it could just be because it’s roughly 4:30 AM in the morning and even after a long night, this insominac suddenly felt the need to release her jumbled thoughts before crashing into deep, dreamless sleep.

Either way I’m here—

Precariously hanging out over this cliff, I know I'll ride out the thrill over and over again until I find someone willing to completely let go with me.

Someone to take a jump with we dive, tangled together, into the never-ending Abyss of our Unknown.

31 Musing(s):

Anonymous said...

I'm likin' the analogy you've shared. Falling in love is a thrill ride of huge proportion. But keep your cool while taking the occasional thrill ride because it's prepping you for the ride of (and for) a lifetime.

me said...

You're like Spiderman, but slightly cooler and without the spandex.

Joanne said...

Dailytri: Very true. I don't know about keeping my cool--I think I know how I am too well, sometimes knowing doesn't change things. I do believe that each experience helps me be better at it the next time around.

Vy: Ha! And that's why I'm soooo good at hanging up posters on walls, so good that they fall on top of me...right?

Anonymous said...

The one big disappointing thing about being happily married is that I will never fall in love again. Being in love is so different than the fall! When it happens, savor it. Because no matter how great it is, it will eventually change into something different.

Joanne said...

Nola: Hmm...not that I would know from experience, but I don't think falling in love is that much different from being in love...because I've known some of my good friends for quite some time now, but every so often I find myself falling in love with them all over again. I agree, though, wholeheartedly that love does transform and change into something a reflection of us as people who change. It's something real special to find someone to change with you. =)

thethinker said...

Wow. That was beautifully written, especially that last line.

Dom said...

well...I'd love to try rock-climbing one fine day. I'm to short and small now. :o)

The Chick said...

I always say I'm so glad to be done with my twenties. But I must say....when I read something lovely like that....that I can't help but envy you for the life you have ahead. Jump in with both feet, my friend!

Anonymous said...

love sounds so complex.

conan_cat said...

aww, you talked like the valley of love is like the abyss of doom. it's not that bad! :D but on the other hand, i think that falling in love and being in love is two different things. falling in love is just getting a headstart--once you started, you still have years of a relationship to maintain. being in love is maintaining the relationship, and it is much harder than the headstart. eventually you will learn a lot tho, although i am learning too, to have a long-lasting relationship is a challenge by itself. :)

Anonymous said...

If you let go of the rope, it won't sting your hands.

Great post, as always. :)

Anonymous said...


I like the analogy as well. Last year when I hit the road I put together my own climbing / outdoor analogy. Do a search on my blog sometime (got that little search feature), and look up "Self Rescue Basics." It'll get you right there.

Good post here, as always! Yours reminded me of my old post, but they're very different. :)

As always thanks for sharing!

Joanne said...

TheThinker: Aw, thanks. Then perhaps I should stay up late more, hah (only it totally screws over my sleeping cycle tenfold). Sometimes I don’t know whether it’s good or bad that I write things with so much…yearning. Ah, well.

Bear-bear: You should, it’s an amazing experience.

The Chick: It’s almost ironic, I envy others for already been there, done that...and are ready for more. I see my mother at 53 and she’s never been better. But I know what you mean, seeing so much potential in someone else is really uplifting.

David: LOLs! Agreed. Then again, if it were so simple we probably wouldn’t be able to talk, write, and even do research about it.

Conan: Hahaha, I’m glad you picked up on that connotation. Ah, well…I don’t think it’s an abyss of doom precisely even though I often feel that way about it, ha…that’s why you need someone to hold your hand, neh? =)

Pete: Yeah, they told me that I should have a looser hold on the rope when I speed up…afterwards, lols. Letting go is scary!

Richard: Wow, that is a nice post (off to leave a comment), thanks for pointing me in that direction.

Rolando said...

Enjoy the ride for as long as you can. Just let the train take its course and if you feel like falling, I'd say let go.

Should the train leave without, then shake off the dust and catch the next train, choo choo!

Ehav Ever said...

That was an interesting way of looking at trust and relationships. I have once before heard that rock climbing can humbling in that way of putting things in perspective. Sometimes there is also the ability to trust in our ability to make good decisions so that when we jump we trust ourselves enough to know that we are not alone. There is also the idea that if you were able to get to the top of the mountain and when you jump, the journey back down is unknown but the destination is familiar. It is how you get there. Nice post.

Unknown said...

A few sentences from the book I'm reading:

"If you believe yourself unfortunate, because you have 'loved and lost,' perish the thought. One who has loved truly, has never lost entirely. Love is whimsical and temperamental. Its nature is ephemeral, and transitory. It comes as it pleases, and goes away without warning. Accept and enjoy it while it remains, but spend no time worrying about its departure. Worry will never bring it back."

And so it goes on, the whole chapter is amazing.

Anonymous said...

Love that feeling. That time will come when you find that person but you just have to be patient let the moment find both of you in that place in that time and fate shall take its course. Love is wonderful and you will find it and let go, knowing you will be caught cause you are secure with that other person.

Joanne said...

Ehav Ever: Oh, rock climbing was indeed humbling (repeling down was the easy part, hah). There were many points on the cliff where I was stuck plastered like frog for minutes that seemed to last an eternity. In the beginning I really wanted to give up, but my friends were very patient and encouraging…so, I did eventually make it! And boy was I tired after that one climb, hah. WOW, what a great interpretation of the analogy, thank you so much for sharing because that’s exactly how I feel and was trying to say! =)

Daniel: Yeah, that was my mindset when my friends wished I would cut my previous love interest out. He made me happy (well, more than he made me sad, angry etc)…we made each other happy, and the time was right for it. I’d always rather accept the now for what it is than worry about what it could be or worry about things that can’t be changed when all that worrying could destroy the good of the experience. Either way, it brought me here to THIS point in my life, to who I am today. I figured that if I am meant to experience something, I’m either going to experience it now or later…so you’re right, it’s better to ride it out for what it’s worth!

Bobby: Haha, ohh I’m the champion of being patient while feeling Impatient, apparently. I never could bring myself to have a boyfriend for the sake of having one. It had to be for that person and NOT just because he happened to be male, single, and available, lols.

Anonymous said...

Joanne, this was an excellent piece of prose. I am still excited about hearing of your new position at the CT. I just find it impossible to think that CT wouldn't want you. I know that when they found your writing they had to ask for your submissions.

You have a new blogging position. My friend Mike is writing a screenplay. Today is full of wonderful news!

What I like about this post is how clearly you relate your experience of rock climbing to the experience of falling in love. The simile is excellent. Everything is almost played out like a dream. Wonderful post, Joanne.

Now I'm off to see if the blogosphere holds any other good news today. I hope you are having a great evening! (I sure am.)

Anonymous said...

Haha Rolando's reply made me laugh. I agree, love is a risk, but a risk worth taking, if you feel like letting the rope go, then let yourself fall and follow your heart.

Getting tangled "into the never-ending abyss of our unknown" is the thrill of the ride with that special someone.As long as you have the right ingredients, love,attraction, trust, respect, both looking in the same direction, same wavelength and etc... then you're set for the ride of your life. :)

Quoting Rolando: "Should the train leave without, then shake off the dust and catch the next train, choo choo!":)

Joanne said...

Erina: Thank you! Hahaha, spread the good karma =)

Thira: Oo! I missed Rolando’s reply! Thanks for mentioning how funny he is, lols. Having the right ingredients…er, I should say discovering the right mix that works for you with someone else is so precious because it’s so unique. I’d rather take the risk than risk regretting something.

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