How well do you know the people closest to you?
A British woman was celebrating her wedding to an Italian man, in Italy, when suddenly she found herself caught up in a local custom. It seems that in order to solidify the union, she had to be able to choose her mate, blindfolded, from a lineup — by feeling his rear end!
Thankfully, she chose correctly, but imagine her fear that she would get it wrong!
Clearly, we can’t all go around feeling each other’s butts, but would you know your mate’s? Would you be able to choose your brother’s feet if you were shown a photograph of several pairs? Or your father’s ears?
You may think it odd to even ponder such notions, but looking closely at my son’s nose, I wondered if I would know it anywhere, any time.
It happens to be one of those perfect little baby button noses that you see on many small children. It looks nothing like mine, and only vaguely resembles his father’s.
Thinking about it more, I realized I would be able to pick out all of my mother’s body parts, and my son’s, and even my spouse’s. Some of my friends’ hands would be easily identifiable, the odd nose, certain people’s lips, a pair of feet here and there. But not much more than that.
So how can we feel that we really know people, when we can’t even tell what they look like unless they’re pieced together? Shouldn’t we be able to identify our closest family and friends better than that?
OK, enough silliness. What about the way in which the people close to you respond? Do you know what to expect from your friends and family? In times of trouble, do you know on whom you can count, and what kind of response you’ll get?
Many people have within their group of friends, a cynic, a realist, an optimist, a pessimist, etc. and have a pretty good idea how each will respond to a problem or situation.
The way you really know someone is when you know, not only how he or she will react, but also what you can get away with. That doesn’t mean you should push your spouses’ buttons to test him or her. Rather, it means that you know how much, or how little, you have to say to get your message across.
It’s a very comforting feeling to be able to look at someone, be it your spouse, a family member, or a good friend, shrug your shoulders or cock your head a certain way, and know that that person understands exactly how you feel. And whether that exchange results in you bursting forth with peals of laughter or sobs, it’s heartwarming to know that with that person, you have a strong relationship.