I can honestly say that I have never been lonely.
When I was alone.
I have had a few people share with me lately that they are experiencing loneliness. Life circumstances have shifted, leaving them in some ways alone. As they shared with me I internally did what I always do when interacting with someone’s feelings: I went into my own depths in order to directly relate and empathize with what was being shared. It was that direct inquiry inside of myself that reaffirmed what I have long known.
I have never been lonely when I am alone.
I have indeed felt lonely in relationship and sometimes even in crowds. I feel lonely in relationships where there is little actual relating. When vacancy is premium and intimacy rare. When I felt myself quite literally talking into a listless void. When regardless of how I tried I could not find a connection. When I have been with people who are rarely with themselves, and so are incapable of being with me. There is loneliness when I cannot for the life of me feel myself landing in the experience of the other. When there truly isn’t any there, there.
Then I feel a loneliness. A sadness. A longing to connect. A deep desire to feel atone rather than alone in company.
I see you there, and yet somehow you aren’t.
In a world of photo ops and endless selfies I long to see deeply and to know that I am seen. To touch and to be touched. To fully and freely let you in and to feel myself happening inside of you energetically and relationally. I care little about having a virtual record of our encounters if I didn’t feel like we were even really there.
My empathic exploration within reaffirmed for me that I am good company. I like spending time with me. I pay attention to myself. I listen. I feel freely and openly. I laugh, I cry, I take life in and I let love out. I relish my moments and my inner-activity.
The one thing I am not when I am alone is lonely.
So maybe you would like to spend a little time with me? Together? Not to avoid loneliness but to celebrate true togetherness.
We could take a walk. Have a chat. Listen deeply and respond authentically. Or we could sit and do nothing at all. Not even speak. Just sit and silently share space. Heart to heart. Gaze to gaze. Two people who enjoy their own and so each other’s company. It would be lovely.
Or if that doesn’t work, I will be content to sit alone and listen and feel and gaze and wonder and simply be.
Alone, and not a bit lonely.