I must have used this quote by Tolstoj from "Family Happiness"many a times. In the whole idea of God, community, self discovery, emotions, love - I have always found the concept of shared life ever so captivating. Having spent most of my teen-age years as a misunderstood-self-condemning little nerd, I discovered in the deep sense of community an incredible release of warmth and energy. Needless to say, those years of solitude taught me invaluable lessons regarding self-management and contentment under all type of circumstances. However, in as much as it taught me of to be well by my-self, it also showed me that with other(s) it is better, everything is better.
There are times when solitude and asceticism are still to be preferred and sought after - like fasting in preparation for an event which requires higher levels of commitment than our routine life - but on our day-to-day life having someone by your side caring and sharing, and loving and looking after is so precious. And for all this, I am truly grateful. Everything is more beautiful with you.
"I have lived through much, and now I think I have found what is needed for happiness. A quiet secluded life in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people to whom it is easy to do good, and who are not accustomed to have it done to them; then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one's neighbor--such is my idea of happiness. And then, on top of all that, you for a mate, and children perhaps--what can more the heart of man desire?" - from "Family Happiness" L.N. Tolstoj.