Oh universe, you and your sense of humor.
Within 24 hours of my last optimistic post, the universe responded, "Oh really?" and tested me with a person I already know but whose energy can only be compared to a black hole.
I was struck by how not open I was. Where had the serenity gone? What about that sense of one-ness and the anthill? I felt totally guilty and fraudulent, and I took it as a personal failure.
Then I started to think about boundaries. I think a crucial component of openness is also maintaining one's ability not to be open. If that makes sense.
As true as it is what Lorilee said, how everyone is worth getting to know if only you spend enough time in conversation together to prove it out, with very few exceptions - there will always be those exceptions. As vital as it is to keep trying, it's also important to recognize those people with whom interactions are the equivalent of sitting in a closed garage with the engine running. Such moments, I'm happy to report, are extremely rare. But when they happen, put on your own oxygen mask first.