Monday, April 25, 2016

there's a huge difference between loneliness and solitude.

solitude is defined by those moments where you isolate yourself on purpose because you need some peace and quiet, or sleep, or some time to think and reflect. i, for one, am good at solitude.

i am not, however, good at being alone.

i have this unusually deep desire to connect - really connect - with people, and all of my efforts are put into doing so. the problem is, i find, that most people don't crave the same connection that i do, or at least their actions don't line up with their desire if they do.

people make plans to hang out, and break them, show up with their phone glued to their fingertips, and if they do follow through with their plans and put their phone down, most avoid going any deeper than small talk. "how was your day?" "good. yours?"

does anyone else feel this way?

i sit at home feeling lonely, hoping someone, anyone will text me and ask me how i'm doing [lord knows i do this to so many], or initiate some quality time with me so i'm not sitting at home replaying my mom's death over and over in my head, or desiring to be with her.

i'm really trying here, you guys.

i reach out and initiate contact. i get up every day and go to work. i do what i can to have fun, plow through my bucket list, and keep my brain occupied. i'm seeing a counselor, and the list goes on. but i can't for the life of me shake this lonely feeling, or seem to make my way through this dark and messy thing called grief.

dr gary chapman talks about the ways in which we give and receive love in his book "the five love languages". throughout his book, he claims that the reason why so many relationships fail to work is because we're not speaking the language our spouse/friends/parents need us to speak.

some of us exhaust ourselves trying to show love to our significant others by speaking life into them, when all they really need is a hug. or cooking dinner for them when all they really need is a word of encouragement, or spending hours at the office to provide for them when all they desire is quality time.

for me, words are huge. if sincere, nothing makes me feel more loved than a word of encouragement. a simple "i appreciate you" can keep me going for weeks. secondary to that, quality time is of utmost importance. i believe that if you love someone, you'll want to be with them, and make time for them.

of course, this is how i operate. if i love you, i'll tell you. a lot. i'll send you random texts, write you letters, rearrange my schedule to see you, and spend a few hours on a bus just to have a quick coffee with you without thinking twice about it.

the problem is, these two love languages are the hardest for people to speak [words can be awkward and time is a hot commodity these days], so regretfully, i wrestle with feeling unloved at times. especially now as i mourn the loss of my mom and need it the most.

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