“Do you believe in soul mates?” Friend X asked me the other day. “Ah, never mind. You probably don’t. You are not the airy-fairy hippie type,” she continued without waiting for my reply, sipping happily on her wine.
Well, yes, I am not the airy-fairy hippie type. But I do happen to believe in soul mates. So there.
I however don’t think that one person has just one soul mate AND neither do I believe that soul mates are always permanent or confined to the romantic sphere. These special beings come in a wide variety of disguises. Some of them are friends, other mentors, parents, or total strangers. And lovers, of course. Some of these soul mates show up in your life and stick around like cheap Chinese superglue, while others pop up briefly and then vanish – *poof-gone*.
Despite their differences, all soul mates have one thing in common: they leave a lasting imprint on … well, I guess your soul. Or something like that.
I feel I have (had) several soul mates, and each one of them is playing / has played a unique role in my life, whether short and sweet or long and substantial.
Take my friend José. This chick is definitely one of my über soul mates. We have been friends since we were 13 years old, and despite the distance (she lives in The Netherlands while I reside in the most beautiful city in the world, Cape Town) we are very close. She is usually the first one I call when shit hits the fan this side, and I was one of the first people she told about her pregnancy. Whenever we see each other, which is usually once a year, it is like we met just the week before. I feel safe having her in my life. I feel that there is nothing in the world I cannot share with her. José will not judge, she will not laugh at me, or make me feel insignificant. I have some more friends who fit this bill, but José is different. She is like the sister I have never had.
Some soul mates however, come and then go – sometimes in a matter of days. A couple of years ago, I was overseas for work. I was minding my own business in the hotel lobby, when a handsome man started a conversation. When I turned around and looked him in the yes, something deep inside soft collided with my soul, leaving a nearly invisible yet permanent imprint behind. I guess you can compare the feeling the soft, gentle thud when the elevator you’re in hits the ground floor. Ou know, the feeling when your tummy and briefly heart change places. There was this instant connection, *smack-bang out of the blue* I must add that I rarely have instant connections with people, so I know when it happens.
Because I was on a media trip, I could not chat for very long and neither could he. A few days later, our paths crossed again. For the life of me I cannot remember how or where. All I can remember that he offered me a lift to my hotel because I had missed the bus. He dropped me off, we hugged – and that was that. While this encounter was very brief, and would probably not be meaningful to most people, I consider this person as one of my ‘hit and run’ soul mates. I can’t explain why, but that is just the way it is.
By the time I was finished with my explanation about my opinion re soul mates, Friend X’s jaw had dropped on the floor.
“You are an airy-fairy hippie after all! You just don’t know it yet,” she giggled while asking the waiter for a top-up.