Writer's block has been almighty this week, as I have had plenty worth putting to (virtual) paper, but not quite the words to get it there.
I've been a patron of the arts, with one world-class piece of theater and one brilliant-joyous-laughter-cry-inducing middle school play taken in; I've had delicious food cooked in my kitchen and stranger's kitchens; I've gone for what only can be described as the saddest attempt at a jog on what might have been the most beautiful March Saturday I've ever known; and I've spent ample time with many, many people I care for deeply.
Earlier this week, I made dinner with a friend, followed by some wine at a neighborhood cafe. It was a beautiful evening, and while we sipped our flights of wine - mine white, his red - we marveled at the world around us and the friendship that has been developing between us. And I wondered aloud at why, though starkly different people, we remain connected somehow.
He said, "Because we are both lonely."
Not words I ever hoped to hear.
I think of myself as independent, self-sufficient. I think of myself as quirkyalone, not depressed to be alone. I think of myself as choosing my companions carefully, thoughtfully.
Yes, there are many activities that I partake in that I realize could involve another person. There are hours, full days, entire weekends I enjoy the company of me. It's mostly very pleasant, but I'd be lying if I didn't admit that at times my heart hurts because of it. I see something beautiful outside my car window; I read a line in a book that takes my breath away; I overhear a conversation that makes me giggle...and I think how much I would like to share these things with someone.
Does a moment gain meaning by our ability to share it? Further, does it only have meaning when we have another person to validate it?
I don't think so.
I think it's important to find the balance in life, the balance in all things. To find the time to pause just for your own self to breathe in the wonder of the world, as well as to find the time to spread what you are experiencing to the people around you. Of course there can be a disconnect: moments you want so badly to share but don't have anyone to share with. What's to be done in a moment like that? How do we keep the loneliness of that moment from infecting the person we are?
It's that disconnect that I struggle with and that I think my friend sees in me. What he calls lonely, I am only starting to find the words to describe...
Because I don't innately see myself as a "lonely" individual. I am at times alone. I am at times lonely. I can be alone but not lonely. And I can also be lonely when I am not alone. All of these truths create the person, the one, I am.