What It’s Like To Be Addicted To The Chase

unsplash.com/Greg Raines
unsplash.com/Greg Raines

“The chase” isn’t what I’ve always identified as being addicted to.

I think that for many of us, this term is a secondary notion.

What I’m primarily addicted to intimacy – physically, emotionally and mentally. I want to delve as deeply as I can into peoples psyches – figure out what makes them tick, what makes them rage, what makes them reform. I want to understand others fears motivations on a core, guttural level and to do so, I have to know them intimately. I have to know them in every capacity. I have to know them as thoroughly as humanely possible.

And to achieve that level of intimacy with people, you have to pursue them relentlessly.

So consequently, I like the thrill of the chase.

I like being someone who isn’t afraid to tirelessly pursue the people who entice me. I like the shock value of being someone who asks and asserts what I want directly, in a world full of people who are timidly guarding their true desires. I enjoy the way it catches people off guard and unhinges them – pulls them into a space where they’re exhilarated by the opportunity to drop their own defences and explore what they’ve been hiding for so long.

You learn the tricks of eliciting intimacy and it becomes somewhat of a fixation.

You see, I find people compelling – almost intoxicatingly so. I want to know what they’re guarding, what they’re holding back from sharing, what they’re clasping onto so desperately that they’ll go to almost any measure to keep from revealing. I become easily obsessed with secrets and half-truths and mysteries. I feel the obsessive, unyielding need to uncover more and it’s becoming impossible to shake.

It becomes an addiction to the chase.

It’s something you get hooked on and then cannot let go at any cost.

There is nothing more exhilarating than the one you have not figured out yet. There is no challenge greater than getting inside the mind of someone who is desperate and determined to keep everyone out – in a real, actual way. Not the people who claim that they don’t let others in but are secretly dying for someone to come break down their walls. The people those walls are authentic for. The people who have something to hide.

And I’m not sure quite where this obsession stems from.

I’m not sure what makes some people obsessed with that rawness, bareness, nakedness, and others satisfied with the surface and the niceties. I’m not sure why I need to know everyone’s tragedies and downfalls and triumphs and hopes. I’m not sure why one person is never enough. I’m not sure why it’s always out with the old and in with the new, the undiscovered, the unsolved.

But I think that it has to do with this: I’m attracted to the badness in people. I’m attracted to the evil, the despicable, the dirty and broken-down and used-up parts of ourselves that we’re trying so hard to hide.

I’m attracted to those parts because the further I dissect and examine them, the more I have come to understand that they’re woven together with beauty. And with strength and integrity and goodness, in their own twisted way.

I’m attracted to the parts of people that even they’re afraid to delve into, for fear they’ll never pull themselves back out. I’m attracted to the parts that feel hatred because those are the parts that feel love. I’m attracted to the parts that fuel anger and ugliness and rage because those are also the parts that heal and protect and forgive.

I’m attracted to the wretchedness in people because it stems from the exact same spot as their greatness – as all their beauty and resilience and strength.

And not many people are aware of that – not in other people and definitely not in themselves.

Not many people understand that the birthplace of all of our truths is an inherently neutral one – that we are not at a constant tug-of-war between the parts of ourselves that are beautiful, whole and enriching and the parts that are wretched and wrong.

And I think that’s the case with so many of us who grow so addicted to the chase – we are the people who’ve been fighting with those shadows for far too long. We’re the people who want to know and understand and connect so intimately with other people because we so direly need to know that we are not alone.

That we aren’t the only ones fighting our demons. That we’re all a divine mixture of beauty and pain and redemption and brokenness, woven into the wholly imperfect human form.

That we’re all truly the same at our core – that we all embody a fantastically fucked-up potential for great love and great pain. That we’re all simply expressing the same lifeblood a little differently.

And so you become addicted to the chase, because you are addicted to knowing you’re okay. You’re not alone. You’re not broken or flawed or imperfect.

You’re simply human.

And you keep constantly chasing that reminder. TC mark

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