Sea of Solitude

This is seriously not about the aptly named game! Don’t follow through if you’re here for it.

Have you ever experienced utter loneliness while actually being surrounded by lots of people who care about you and shower lots of love? I bet most of us have.

We live in a very tense society. We are constantly pulled apart by it and we need to pull ourselves together. But, honestly, at this point in time, I’m not so sure if there’s going back. Do I love solitude? I don’t have an answer for that either.

I experience the sadness of unsure future. I keep getting afraid of losing relationships with time. As a midlife adult with not a lot of me time, this is my safe space to vent my feelings and I just love writing about what’s going on with my life. I absolutely love sitting up late at night writing down my thoughts until I can barely lift my fingers.

Over the past few years, I have met a few more people like me and made friends with them. I’m super glad after I came to know that I actually was not alone with this world of racing thoughts. Ironically, I feel social media isn’t the right place to be open, honest, and well, social.

I’m a freelancer, I work from home and often spend a whole week on my own — most of the time it doesn’t bother me, but sometimes it makes me feel very isolated. Of course, just because you are alone, doesn’t mean that you are lonely, and just because you are surrounded by people doesn’t mean that you can’t be lonely. The goal is to become fine with spending time on your own (or better still, enjoy it), so that you don’t have to surround yourself with people that aren’t genuine friends. And if the people around you leave you feeling empty and disconnected, then it’s time to reconsider who you’re spending time with. Because chances are that the reason you’re feeling lonely is because you don’t feel connected to the people around you, or feel that they don’t genuinely care about you.

Stop focusing on what’s missing, and start focusing on what you can control and what you do have. Stop looking for what you need in other people, and start finding it within yourself.

The clouds will settle with time and one day you’ll find yourself in a room of people that you can call your dearest friends, like I have, and today will feel like a long time ago. You have to trust that there are people waiting for you for when you come out the other side. Never let go of hope, it is the only thing that truly matters.

If you’re reading this and feeling lonely, pour yourself a glass of champagne and put on your favorite music or a film, or your favorite show. Go to the cinema, or take yourself out for dinner. If you can’t enjoy your own company, how can you expect others to? Once you’re able to be your own best friend and have built that foundation within yourself and have already gone through periods of solitude and being alone, then no matter who walks in and out of your life, you’re invincible. There will 100% be times in your life that the people around you will completely disappoint you, but you’ll know that you can make it through because you know that you’ve always got yourself and can enjoy your own company and that you’re going to be just fine — on your own.

I’m going to let you in on fun fact since you have made it this far. Did you know that crabs have a hard shell that doesn’t expand as it grows in size? Well, how does it survive then, you may ask. Turns out, as it grows, the shell becomes very confining, so it settles under a rock formation for a few days to prevent it from being eaten by other predators. It casts of its old shell and grows a new one. Eventually, the new shell becomes confining and uncomfortable as it grows. Back under the rocks. A crab repeats this cycle numerous times. The stimulus for the crab to grow and expand its shell is when it’s put under a lot of pressure under its own self.

Now, imagine if crabs had pills and every time they felt pressured, they get a Valium or Percocet, felt fine and never cast of its shell. One day it will die of its own burden. What I’m trying to say is that we have to realize in times of stress, that it is a signal that we need to expand and grow ourselves. Taking advantage of the adversity itself and ultimately overcoming that calamity itself in the process.

Finally, If you’re reading this and are in a bad place, if it’s any consolation, I was where you are now, just three months ago. And things look very different now. Just hold on to the fact that “this too shall pass”. But it just requires a little bit of work to get there. It will be so worth it. 🙂