“Soul mate” the term is such a cliché and sounds fairly outdated in today’s world where relationships change so fast. I don’t believe in having one soul mate for life. I’m of the school of thought that we have multiple soul mates in our lifetime – a different one to cover a specific need. Some may even come to satisfy a particular purpose and be temporary. The reason we are drawn to someone is that they mirror us in some way, at that point in time and remind us of ourselves in some aspect. If two people were identical then one would be unnecessary. Hence I feel different individuals may be similar to us in different aspects of our personality. We can have different kinds of relationships with each.
When I was growing up, I spent time with my younger sister. While she was born 3.5 years after me – like typical sisters we had our own share of experiences. When she was born I felt insecure, having to share everything with a new person. When she became a toddler I was very fond of her. She was my little toy to play with. While playing with friends, I often protected her. But we got close only when we were a little older – I twelve and she nine. We took a trip together without our parents to visit cousins. In the interactions with them, we immediately sided up with each other and constantly craved each other’s company. That’s when it actually dawned on us that we are siblings and friends for life. We used to talk for hours, making our parents wonder what topics we had to discuss every day! We shared everything from cosmetics and food to our secret crushes. We are still the same. Both of us are now mothers but continue to have our share of discords, arguments and then apologies. Thankfully, our relationship is still the same even with our husbands and kids entering the equation and we hope to keep it this way.
This kind of soul companion, as I call it, is usually a family member or a friend who is like family. With this soul companion you can talk about anything and everything and share an equation unlike any other. These relationships feel easy and comfortable. These relationships can be carefree, but they also shape us. They teach us to trust and believe in ourselves. In this dynamic, both people feel comfortable telling each other anything. Nothing is off limits. You are accepted for who you are. These are the people who help you grow into the person you are meant to be. These people always have your best interests at heart and will stop at nothing when asked to help you accomplish your dreams. These people come in and out of your life when you need to be directed. They help bring you back to your inner desires and reconnect you with your abilities.
Your other soul mates can possibly get threatened by this relationship and so you need to explain and handle it delicately. This person is often there to stay forever occupying an important place in your life that no one else can take. You will probably be together forever — no matter how much time passes or how far apart you are geographically.
When I grew up and went for my post-graduation, I fell in love with a boy and got married. While the realization of him being my ‘soul mate’ didn’t come to me immediately, over time I realize he’s the one. For me, soul romance has meant finding the “right” person who is always by my side. Someone who loves me when I deserve it the least for he knows that’s when I need it the most. Someone who shares my dreams and allows me to fly. Someone with whom I can be myself without being judged. Someone who still looks at me and remembers the first time he saw me. It’s difficult to say this soul mate pre-existed. I rather think, this soul mate is a fruit of labour- long years of caring for and nurturing our relationship, working hard at it, spending time understanding our weaknesses, working through our differences, respecting each other’s individuality yet presenting our combined strength as the face of our marriage.
This kind of soul romance is as per the most conventional definition of soul mate. This is the soul mate that every one of us desires to have and spend the rest of our days on earth together. These people encompass all the others. There is a feeling of having known them for an entire lifetime, moments after meeting them. There is an intense bond and connection that never goes away, the deep friendship, and the extraordinary, enchanted, deep-seated love. They provide romance, love and stand by you forever. You think alike, finish each other’s sentences, make collective decisions and naturally do things as a pair. Relating to this person feels natural and easy. You can probably easily communicate even without words. This relationship transcends the ego. You get a sense of wholeness from this relationship and will most likely enjoy this relationship for the rest of your lives.
The last category of soul mates includes people who arrive with some intention and provide you with life lessons. They show up by “divine timing” — exactly when you most need to learn what they have to teach. For me the soul buddies are my close friends who remain in my life even if we do not get a chance to meet or talk as regularly. They are always there when I need them, understand me and are strong pillars of support. I need their presence to vent out at times or just to let my hair down. They help me relax and get out of the mundane routine activities.
These people help us learn how to move forward. You can spend hours together without getting bored. They are usually temporary in terms of the roles they play. While they may stay in your life, their importance changes over time and they may move from the inner circle to the periphery. They usually arrive with a specific intention, are non-judgemental and with you in that time of need. The bond is strongest when your purposes are aligned even though the relationship continues beyond.
So these are my soul mates that will most likely last for a lifetime. One may not have just one soul mate for life. Instead these different kinds may be present and co-exist. Can you identify who fits these categories for you?
This article was first published on Bonobology.