Because I look like a rockstar. (Or a groupie.)
I have come to the realisation that as people change, so do their relationships to the people around them. It's a little bit like math; if one side of the equal sign changes, so must the other. That's how you keep things on an even keel. And you don't fuck with math. You fuck with math, you fuck with my math junkie friend D, and she will not hesitate to kick some ass. And when she's done she will teach you about fractals. Girl is badass.
My "nearest and dearest" are what I call the little sphere of people I know with whom I feel most comfortable. Funnily enough, a few of the so-called "nearest and dearest" aren't even nearby; one of them lives in Georgia, another went north, in the great white plains of Canada. (I was never a fan of geography, so if Canada doesn't have great white plains then you can just correct me.) They are people whom I would trust with my life, and by extension, my well-being. As the years have gone by, one changes, and so does the other. The relationship -- the equal sign -- has to stay on that even keel. That's just how it works. That's how the world works. That's what D -- and she's East Coast, too, last I checked -- says, anyway, and I tend to believe D when she says these things. Girl's a smart cookie.
Without physical closeness, I reach out to these people with something a little bit more intangible, and a little bit more raw. We exchange thoughts instead of hugs, and we forge a relationship that way. Without sight -- I don't see them, I don't meet them -- the other senses get stronger: you hear a little more, speak a little louder, and you learn to understand better. And the other person, in turn, hears more, speaks louder, and understands better, too.
People whom I can easily meet in my city don't get the same treatment. I see them, I hug them, and our exchanges become tangible, but they also become a little more guarded. Strangely enough, it's easier to hide in someone's plain sight than it is to hide from someone who is blind to you. People I've come to know from far away seem to know me better than people right beside me.
Tangible things are finite and can be measured. Hugs can be counted.
Intangible things have infinite worth. Try measuring love. Weighing it.
You sit with someone in a room and nobody speaks; most of the time it feels awkward and still, the silence can be heavy and suffocating. So someone talks. Sit alone in a room and get a text message from someone: :) and the silence can feel peaceful. You can maybe stay there with your thoughts and a smileyface for hours.
People whom others in my life may call "strangers" are 私の大事な人, "people who are valuable to me." I'm supremely thankful for them in my life.
Though that isn't to say that the tangible people, 目の前な人 (the people in front of my eyes) aren't as important, or valuable. They bring me a lot of joy. They're fun to hug. Their expressions make me laugh. All of this is important to me too. All of that also matters.
I suppose that what I mean is that, everyone you know changes you, whether you like it or not. No person will ever remain static, even if they stay in one place, as long as they have relationships with other people. When someone you know changes, you will inevitably change as well. That's the way the world works.
Nobody remains the same person very long. Everyone changes, even if it's not obvious.
Everyone learns. Everyone grows.
The people on the other side of my equal signs are all changing.