by The Crisses
We have 19 people. It's like we're all in a room, much like a living room. There are "two" sections of the room with a window at the other end, and back rooms, too. Even a door.
Front is like we're at the window, looking at the world. Normally one person at a time, but more people can look out the window at a time, sometimes, it's kinda odd. But standing shoulder-to-shoulder is kinda crowded, and we can't get quite as close to the window. When we share Front, it's like we're sharing simultaneous but separate point of views on what's going on out the window.
Most of the time, other people are sitting around in the living room, commenting on what's going on out the window. They can see out, if they choose to, by looking around the shoulder of the person/s who are Front, but the people outside probably won't notice them. If they shout really loud people outside the head/body might hear them, but it's easier to just tell the person at the window what we'd like to say, and have them relay it.
When people are weak or having problems, they sit in the other, farther back areas, and don't participate in the general ruckus which is the world-at-large going on outside the window.
Sometimes people disappear from view entirely, going into the kitchen or bedroom ('far' Back), doing whatever they do in my head outside of the perceptions of the others. Sometimes going far Back can be a bad thing, because we lose sight of them, sometimes we worry about them or miss them. Some people just shouldn't be left alone for too long--like the children in our head.
Behind that door in the Back, there are a whole lot of other people we're not really familiar with, who we keep out of the communal headspace because we don't like the house TOO crowded...imagine 19 people always living in your apartment...it's already kinda crowded.
We've been considering upgrading to a newer, larger house :) or maybe a community with multiple buildings ;)