Mastodon Michael Perry

Understanding another

There are these old sayings like,

Put yourself in their situation

Let me tell you in my many years of living, it’s impossible. No matter how much we want or need or are compelled sometimes we can never do that. We can never understand another person no matter what we try. For 23 years I thought I understood my ex wife. In the 23d year she did some things which made me realize all the things I believed I knew were conveniences of a little fact but more fiction.

This came to an indelicate head in 2020 when I visited. I realized after yet another experience with my ex wife I had never really understood her even though she was wont to say things like,

Don’t you understand how I feel ?

I should have said no. No I don’t. I never will. In her case though after almost 30 years I finally felt like I knew just this much so I told my son at lunch knowing the words would find their way back,

I never really understood mom until we divorced. Now I think I got some insight

It’s the same here. Over the past days I’ve realized that we are not meant to walk in another’s shoes, to find their feelings and know them, to…


So I decided walking today to quit. I will just take what is offered up. Be grateful that I have this wife. But if she asks ever to put myself in her world, I think it’s impossible. And perhaps that’s what makes love so much better folks. The mystery. The not knowing. The allure that we can never fit inside another. Or their expectations even.

Walking tends to bring peace to me. A runner once said I think,

It’s hard to feel sorry for yourself when running

Maybe that was Jim Fixx. Walking for me being the state sometimes of peace with healings of solitude. I can’t understand another. I can’t be in some Khmer world. And I know I will never, ever understand another.

It’s ok. In fact, I think it’s the way it’s meant to be. Imagine the pain and heartache and sorrow to know another’s feelings, thoughts, hatred’s.


I don’t want that. And I don’t want another to know mine either. It is best if love is a mystery and we reach it without breaking the other person.

Seems ok to me.

May 25, 2023