WARM fantasies are easy to weave on this pleasant, sunny day. I look into people’s faces as if well acquainted with their pain and joy. I see women with whom I have shared hints of intimacy and excitement; women whom I suspect reciprocate my images of them with theirs of me. Sometimes we have stopped each other and, occasionally, talked and made love for long hours, and embraced closely in the morning, glad that we risked the contact.

But it is difficult to let people emerge from the visions. It is far easier to distance myself, to reject them for their failure to fulfill my illusions. And it is my hurt that makes me protect myself from the reality of your being; I am on guard for if you become you I may have to let me free, me who was long taught how unacceptable his thoughts, feelings, actions were. How could you love that person?

I cannot seek my fantasies today; my mind will not cooperate. I must separate you from your myth, for I know that only my self love will free me from this gnawing loneliness. If I am full within myself then I am complete within anyone’s love. If I am inadequate, incomplete, alone without you, I will be that way with you. Only I can make my hole whole.

I am becoming stronger, more confident in my worth, more loving of myself. I am not battered as frequently with self admonitions of change, to do better. Instead, I remind myself, “You’re doing fine, just accept yourself.” My love feels cleaner, easier, not as grabbing but more solid.

I spent this afternoon being happy instead of seeking happiness.