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Spirit Rock Romances, or, The Stories We Tell Ourselves
By Tova Gabrielle
Wednesday, April 02, 2003
Not rated by the Author.
It's mostly in your head; rarely, the bed.
At Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Marin, my teacher talked about a phenomena called "Spirit Rock Romances": What happens while you are not speaking or making eye contact for five or more days on retreat.
It might start something like this: you spy someone you find attractive nearby, and think, hmmm. The next day there he is in the dinner line across from you and you think, "now that's interesting I wasn't even thinking about him and here he is". The next day at lunch he's sitting across from you.
"Oh," you surmise, "he is noticing me. ' As time crawls by with you watching your breath hour after miserable hour, you start to have "insights":....Geez, he must really be interested in me....hey, who knows, maybe he and I would work. hmmm. That evening in your bed, alone, hungry, and isolated the romance begins to flourish. How could you have missed it? He could be the one.
Maybe we should live in Marin. No, Berkley, Marinís too expensive.... I wonder if he'd relocate up the coast, the rents are SO much better.
...I bet he's relocatable, I mean he's obviously unusually flexible, he even is doing a retreat. and at the exact same time as me. Was it destiny?... He's probably been divorced, maybe even twice... probably he comes with kids. oh I hadn't thought of that. I don't want to be dealing with his kids as well as mine. ...OK, so say I do agree to his kids, I just go back into the whole communal schtick again, I can do that. I mean, after all, this guy's obviously different than others.... he takes time off from his busy life to come here and just sit.
...Jeez, I can't pass this one up.
...but what if we don't get along?
... I bet the sex will be great Iíll bet he's into Tantra.
..It's so obvious that he's smitten with me. He's having a hard time concentrating. Look at how he fidgets. Well, that's so sweet I mean how many guys love older women like me. Finally-- a guy who is spiritual and walks, or sits his talk....but probably after the sex gets to be a chore for him, he's probably like that, they all are after a while, he'd be looking around. Anyhow, it probably isn't worth it if he's going to leave me for a younger bratt. Forget it, I didn't want all those kids anyhow....
...After that talk on spirit rock romances, Iím out in the lobby getting my shoes on to go home. This guy and I exchange looks. I say, "it probably won't work out" and he laughs and says "yeah, probably our kids wonít get along". We laugh, I sigh and finish putting on my shoes....
At my car I can't help but wonder, though, at the great timing between us.††