Loneliness vs. Being Alone…


Many want to emphasize the difference in these two concepts and while I agree in principal with the idea of being comfortable in my own idea of myself and my own company, I have been there for years in relationships. I have been comfortable with my own company for a long time. I do not mind spending time alone. I do not have any problem spending time researching, reading, watching my own programs, learning, exercising, fixing my own meals, all I am quite comfortable doing without the presence or assistance of another.

But let’s face it. We all want connection. I do not need others around me for practical reasons. I am perfectly capable of paying my bills, taking care of the everyday needs of my household. I can take care of me. That doesn’t mean I don’t wish for companionship in the late evenings. I wish for the company of someone who is not interested in worrying about their ego and their finances. I will take care of mine, you take care of yours. I want someone who is interested in my company and only my company. What would that be like? Maybe I have had that in the past and was unable to acknowledge or appreciate it. I’m not sure.

At my age, people are so often marked by the scars of their previous relationships. I know I am no different. And yet, it seems many are only interested in protecting themselves from the possible swindle, the hoodwink. Is that all we have become? Marks for each other’s concerns as we hunker down in our little fox holes of safety and concern?

You may think it is easy for me to say so as I must not have much. Actually, I have my entire livelihood on the line and I look at each individual with the utmost worry and concern. And yet I want something different. I want someone who might be willing to take the chance on just existing with someone else, understanding who they are, and finding out if the lives might find connection in some way.

This rarely seems to be what another wants. Or at least, they may want it with me and I cannot find myself attracted or if I’m attracted, they do not want it with me. Does that say something about me or about humans in general? The old “want what we can’t have” crap syndrome. Am I so typical I can’t find a way to want what is good for me? Am I only drawing to me what I think I deserve, which is the broken, uninterested, or superficial? I may have broken aspects to me, but I am not the rest. I have strength in me. I have healing capabilities.

I am interested in growth and moving forward. I want to understand what all this means and my place in this brief existence. I want to find connection with others that is meaningful and fulfilling. And yet, I find myself being a hermit because others often make me tired. Others’ needs weigh heavily and I am uncertain how to draw healthy boundaries to not get sucked in so far as to lose myself.

I have a cat that crawls up on my chest and hunkers down, licking my chin and purring quietly. She seems to know and understand her purpose. She knows she is content, perching on the fence post to watch the activity in the neighboring field and then coming inside to curl up next to me in comfort. I would like to anthropomorphize her and think she might be seeking out my company for her and my ease, but I don’t want to project my issues on her. She does purr a little bit louder when I pet and scratch her head, but is it because I feed her in the morning, or because she truly enjoys my company?

I have a sweet, scared, nervous rescue dog that loves to curl up on the foot of my bed to sleep, whether I am in the bed or gone from the house for a while. I would like to think it is because I am a source of comfort, and since she follows me from room to room, I don’t think I am far off. As much as I adore these two and their more self-reliant sister dog, the connection meets some of my needs, but not all.

Some of the books I read seem to suggest that means I am not capable of relying on myself for sustenance or growth. If they only knew the levels I have grown this year. If they only knew the things I have worked for and am attempting to accomplish with three new careers, doing everything on my own and having no true support that wasn’t mostly internal. If they only knew the books and thought processes I am attempting to bring up from the earth and myself.

Is that because I am an introvert? Is it because I am bound and determined to prove my independence? Is it because I am too stubborn and will go down in flames? I’m not sure yet. I reach out to some, but they have their own lives and issues to work with and deal. They cannot reach out to me except on a limited basis.

And so, after another day of working and writing, studying and attempting to find some quiet enjoyment in the words, the ideas, a quiet meal, a few spoken words of greeting with another, and the warmth of critters on the bed and on my chest, I must be content. I must see that this is where I am supposed to be in this moment and time, even if I might wish for something different.

I must be…

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