I think you’re crazy
Just like me.
My mother and I share a strange kinship, an uneven attachment that allows us to regard the world with a quiet condescension, a silent superiority. I could tell her; I felt she could understand my intricate struggles and intense perspectives.
Regarding the boys in my life, my analysis constantly ended in mock facetiousness. “So you do not think that we are soul mates?” I always concluded, with large eyes and a subdued smirk.
“And what do you mean by ‘soul mates’?”
“What does anyone ever mean by ‘soul mates’?”
And with an irritated determination to know myself understood, I pulled out Wuthering Heights and fingered distantly through its papiers.
I paused upon a passage, and read quietly “Surely you and everyone have a notion that there is or should be an existence of yours beyond you. What were the use of my creation, if I were entirely contained here? . . . My love for Heathcliffe resembles the eternal rocks beneath: a source of little visible delight, but necessary. Nelly, I am Heathcliffe! He is always, always in my mind; not as a pleasure, any more than I am always a pleasure to myself; but as my own being.”
I paused to glance at my mother’s quizzically lifted brows.
“You know how that relationship ended.”
“I’m providing the concept, Mother. You asked.”
“It hardly seems healthy.”
I re-opened my book to the forward by Charlotte Bronte.
“Whether it seems right or advisable to create beings like Heathcliffe . . . I scarcely think it is. But this I know . . . the writer who possesses the creative gift owns something of which he is not always master . . . there is little chance left but quiescent adoption.”
I closed the book and my mother smiled. “Try not to drown yourself in philosophical parallels, dear.” She had not answered my question.
I lay that night in my brother’s abandoned room, staring passively at his ceiling.
What concept of soul mates is so illusive? My mom and I have shared our great miseries and joys – she is always with me, not necessarily as a joy (for I inherited her few faults as well as her virtues), but at the cellular level. Our bond is deep – when not beautiful, substantial. We can hurt; we can forgive. We are the rocks, the foundation.
Perhaps soul mates are less elusive, less rare than I had previously thought.