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My writer friend Greg Peters introduced me to the word Saudade, and I felt exotic, just seeing it. Greg was exotic too, and brilliant. He died several years ago, not long after he wrote a review of my book. I have an affinity for exotic people, because they seem alive in a way that I admire. I reconnected with Greg on Facebook after a 30 year absence, and still find myself scrolling his page, even after his death. Greg lived out loud, and I feel like I've been in hiding. It's funny how these things arise in my consciousness, but I'm sure glad they do. I'm missing something within myself too.

A friend told me that people don't say "I love you", to each other in Sweden, but rather, "I love who I am when I'm with you." That resonated with me, and I shared it with my dear friend Christi, one evening when we were trying to make sense of longing, and loss and emptiness. Christi loved the phrase, and it shifted something inside her when I said it.

It's been rare for me to experience longing for anything but God, but I have. It's easy to think that a change in circumstances will fulfill the longing, but I've come to understand something deeper about longing. For me, I've felt most alive when I am creating something, and writing was my art. I've had a long drought with writing, and it's been painful. It's doubly hard because I'm not around the exotic friends that helped me feel alive, and encouraged my expression. Today, I simply acknowledge this longing, and accept it as a sign of a missing connection. I've learned not to judge these states of being either, because my mind cannot appreciate the breadth of the mystery and spirit that moves me.

The other day in meditation, I felt a release, and an embrace of the gentlest vibration. For a moment, my mind stopped, and I accepted the peace. I heard myself say, "Oh yes, this is what I'm really longing for," and I simply sat still.

Longings can look like people, or things, or situations, but at the heart of all of them, is the same essential desire; that I feel seen, loved, and there is enough.

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