She then proposed a question to me that resonated: How are you so different?
It sparked some thought within my mind. I live by the philosophy that there is an existence beyond our five senses: ideals, concepts, and things seemingly imperceivable and not so much verifiable by conventional scientific means. I believe the majority of individuals have an intuition of the same inclination but struggle to reconcile this belief with their everyday existence. Most, I presume, live there life by certainty. Bills are cut and dry and are certainly due. Food is tangible and you certainly need to eat. Sexual desire is certainly real and we seek outlets for the expression. But there are so many nebulous concepts and motivations out there that inspire people, and I believe these intangible desires begin many of the psychological rifts within a person. For instance, love: how can you define love? Can it simply be reduced to chemical reactions and a genetic desire to promulgate a phenotype or is there something more to it, something other worldly about it. The soul: do we all have one, or maybe it’s a subsection of the mind or a construct of such?
And so the question remains…
What makes me any different than Mr. Lamar Odom? Initially I was a bit affronted by the question, because she subsequently stated I often think you have issues. As I began to reflect more upon the question I realized he and I were not so different. No matter how much I attempted to rationalize the truth, there is a part of Lamar that links him to me and that part is the yearning for truth. The yearning for an understanding of who we are and what we are, and the reconciliation of both ideals.
Lamar stated in an interview: “Wherever my heart is and I can have peace of mind (is home). Life can seem nomadic because I don’t know if I’m embracing it or running from it. I can go anywhere, but I don’t know where I want to be.”
This is a very telling statement. I see a lot within this statement. I see a man attempting to reconcile the thoughts in his head with the life that’s been presented to him. I see a man struggling to quiet the voice that’s telling him that there is more truth to life than the common eye can discern. A man who has suffered much but has no true solace for his suffering only the thoughts within his head. Those thoughts provide his only console and so he self-medicates. Perhaps as an attempt to drown out the reality of it all, because maybe the reality that he can doesn’t feel so real after all. And the reality he can sense isn’t evident enough.
Of course I could be projecting all this on to Lamar. I’ve only seen the man once in passing at an AAU tournament I played in when I was younger an Loyola Marymount University..
Lamar: “I’m searching,” he says. “I’m searching, but I don’t know for what. I can’t see what I’m looking for. I just, like, reach out and hope I grab something. But I don’t know what it will be because I don’t know what I’m searching for.”
I see a man who derives no fulfillment from fame and money. He enjoys its fruits but it does nothing for his soul. A man beginning to understand the fact that who is isn’t necessarily all that is to him and his existence. The money fame is never enough and was never enough, it only created a buffer between him and others. It only further entrapped him into a prison of his own thoughts and his own means of self-actualization. Which can make a man feel alone, it’s hard to make your self vulnerable when you live most of your waking life being the image you portray yourself as.
Lamar: “I think about a lot. I think all the time–about everything… There’s so much going on. So many thoughts. I think about this life. About me. Who I could be. Who I was. Who I am. Who am I?”
These seem to be self reflective questions that any person would ask themselves. The “issues “arise when the answers you receive become irreconcilable with your truth. Some people find these answers through religion, others through societies standards and still others seek to derive their own answers. Although our circumstances are vastly different and the manner in which I choose to go about seeking those answers differ. Maybe there are less differences between us as I would have liked to presume– Lamar and I.
So then the question truly becomes…
How are YOU so different?
Here is a link to the Chris Palmer, Bleacher Report interview from which the quotes were pulled: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2580319-finding-lamar-odom-tracking-down-the-elusive-and-recently-embattled-former-star