This quote came up on the e-discussion group for my local Buddhist temple today:
“In every relationship, between you and the other person there are actually six people involved:
1. The person who you think you are
2. The person who you think they are
3. The person who you really are
4. The person who they think they are
5. The person who they really are
6. The person who they think you are.”
It’s accurate, I think. And when I started to think about it in terms of the ways that families interact during the holidays, I suddenly felt like I was on the Faberge Organics shampoo with wheat germ oil and honey commercial from 1977, with faces multiplying into the infinite.
It’s not a wonder that this time of year can be so stressful. We have to navigate meal-making, travel plans, gift-giving, work schedules, football games and emotions, old and new, from inside of a maze of mirrors that may pinch, ripple and bend our images, depending on where we’re standing.