Defining Attraction

My morning walk with the dogs turned into more of a run this morning. It finally started to rain! It’s been overcast and slightly sunny most of the days so far. It’s funny as everyone talks about how miserable the weather is here and I feel like I’ve finally found my utopia. I am actually putting my long pants and shirts to use after drudging them around in my suitcase the past few months. The landscape is so beautiful here. True, it is mostly flat, but very green and lush as well. I’m able to walk many kilometers with the dogs without ever crossing a road. Which means I can take them off their leashes pretty often. However two days ago this got me into a bind. Sweet little affectionate Rodney, attacked a very pretty large bird. I think it was a pheasant, but I can’t be sure. They all like to chase birds, which I thought was just a game they played. Suddenly, Rodney grabbed one by the neck and started shaking it. I screamed!!! While sprinting towards the eruption of feathers scattered everywhere. I grabbed Rodney and picked him up which made him drop the unfortunate bird. By this time, all of the dogs were the happiest and most excited I have ever seen them. Surprisingly, the bird quickly ran into the bushes and Rodney, who was now on the ground, chased after it with incredible speed. I start yelling and sprinting again! But he didn’t even hesitate. I don’t know what happened in the bushes, but I grabbed the leads of the other dogs and ran for home. Rodney eventually caught up with us looking so proud and happy. I can’t be mad at him for following his instincts. Though my somber mood continued throughout the morning. Knowing it was my fault since I trusted Rodney off his leash. These birds are quite common here. I’ve passed them frequently running on the road or as road kill on the narrow, winding streets. The males are just beautiful and very colorful. I told Tomas the gardener, about what happened feeling very upset. He just smiled and shrugged saying it’s a tough life out here. No, it’s not! There are no large predators like cats or bears. I couldn’t help but wonder if he would have felt more sad if it had been a beautiful peacock or swan. Why do we not care about the animals that are plain and ubiquitous?
Humans are very discriminating when it comes to external appearances. Within our own species especially. We always say we need to be attracted to someone at least initially in order to create a long-lasting, loving relationship. I tend to disagree with this sentiment. I’ve been in plenty of relationships with who I considered, very attractive individuals. In each and every case, up close they looked less handsome and over time the passion from the initial attraction fades dramatically. They also became more and more attractive to me the longer we were together. I’ve read research articles where they thoroughly interview couples who have remained in happy committed relationships for 50 plus years. They all say their partner has become more good-looking throughout the years. Probably due to their familiarity. Which to me, this would make a case against the initial attraction carrying so much weight. I have a friend who has been in a committed relationship over a year with someone whom she wasn’t attracted to in the beginning. I remember her telling me how unsure she would feel if and when she met someone that she was more physically attracted to. But she continued on with the relationship because she saw such good potential. He is truly a good man and they have always been in good alignment. I was proud of her since she had the courage to go against what society tell us. Previously, she seemed to always choose the wrong men. The men who were unattainable or unavailable emotionally. So she decided to ignore this part and focus on who he was as an individual. Looking deeper at his true character and integrity. Now after about a year, she is positive that what she has with him is more precious than chasing after a relationship that is more based on the physical representation. Currently, they are happier than ever (I would even say giddy) even though they are now facing the challenging obstacle of a long distance relationship. I am very grateful to be able to learn from them. Because after all, isn’t a person’s physical attraction just our egos inflating that we are able to attract such a person? At least this was how I previously viewed relationships. I would feel the passion more intensely and blissfully if the person was more physically pleasing. I was always in a hurry for them to meet my friends and co-workers so I could boast about how someone so gorgeous was delighted with me. While being blind to others who weren’t as appealing.
Alignment seems much more important and satisfying in the long-term than glamour, which is never a reflection of who the person is on the inside. Do you have the same aspirations, world view, introspection? Is this someone I can look up to, respect? Let’s face it, having a captivating appearance does little for how we show up in the world. It doesn’t reflect how much wealth we accumulate nor determine how much joy we bring into our lives. It’s really just one variable among many for finding true acceptance for allowing someone to join our world. Right now I would even argue this is the least important variable. I can hear voices from the past telling me, “you are just settling for someone not as good as you.” Which is an incredibly simple, maybe even narcissistic view.
To think such deep thoughts could be initiated from a dead bird. Once again, thank you world!!

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