Today I want to talk about a word that is very difficult for me to hear: loneliness. What comes up for you when I just mention it? I imagine there are some who are unable to even read this post to avoid feeling the crushing weight of the heavy word. Speaking for myself, I tend to feel shame, embarrassment, guilt, and at particularly dire times, hopelessness. All of these emotions just increase my anxiety and do nothing to help me feel not lonely. Like with everything I resist, I end up even further down the rabbit hole of despair. But why do I resist feeling lonely? It is something that everyone experiences at some point in their life. Even if we admit it or not. Also, we will leave this world the very way that we came into it, alone. In the past, I have kept acquaintances in my life that would annoy me just to have someone to talk to at a particular moment. Mainly so it wouldn’t look like I was alone. Over the years I’ve encountered plenty of individuals who will stay in negative, dreadful, even abusive relationships just to avoid this one little word. I did this for almost four years myself. I stayed in an unfulfilling relationship and convinced myself that I was happy just so I wouldn’t have to face the world alone. I desperately wanted what perhaps others may also desire, to feel worthy of being loved. But what I didn’t understand at the time is that the underlying cause in the fear of being alone is self-abandonment. I stopped listening to my desires and needs. Basically what it was that made me truly happy. I cut myself off from the most genuine power I have, my inner guidance. I abandoned myself. In my opinion, this is the only time we legitimately feel loneliness.
Yesterday, I completed my short visit in Bergen and am now staying with my good friend, Linda. While I was in Bergen, I stayed in a hotel in the center of the city for a couple of nights to reflect on my own. I’m not sure what it is about staying in big cities, but I definitely felt lonely very quickly after arriving. Maybe I was missing my new fast friend and his fabulous dog, maybe it was passing hundreds of people having a good time which I couldn’t take part in, or maybe I was just ashamed to admit that I sometimes desire someone with me while I embark on this incredible journey. But it doesn’t matter the reason!! The main thing is I realized that I was creating this feeling of loneliness. We are after all, the only ones that create feelings and emotions within. Thank goodness for my recently acquired mental health knowledge. I eventually decided to drag myself out of the hotel room and do some self-care. I started doing things I enjoyed like long walks with Chewy, checking out a board game store, and listening to the live and familiar classical music echoing down the narrow cobbled streets. I didn’t feel 100% better, but it was an improvement. What I need to remember during situations like this is, I will not be able to figure everything out while I am standing right in the thick of it. It just doesn’t happen like this for me. I take days and years to ruminate why I reacted the way I did. I won’t be able to do anything in the moment to make myself feel better until I move on to something else. Life can be complicated. But it can also be extraordinarily wonderful as well.
I am so grateful for my time here with Linda. I already know this will be a hard place for me to leave a week from tomorrow. We are reconnecting in such a special way. Also, she has a four month old kitten that brings me such joy! Unfortunately, Chewy doesn’t feel the same way. 🙂