I have a small family and a selected, small circle of friends. I’m not comfortable in large crowds. I prefer a lonely road to a busy street, birdsong to loud human voices. In spite of this, I don’t consider myself a loner. I do enjoy the company of friends and meeting new people just as much as I enjoy my precious hours alone.
We come into this world all by ourselves and we will leave this world in the same manner and yet to many, being alone is almost a punishment to be avoided at all cost. I’ve seen so many people ruin their lives by clinging on to unhealthy relationships just to avoid being alone. Beautiful, smart individuals unable to be at ease with themselves, unable to tell the difference between being alone and feeling lonely.
When my children were small and while I was teaching them to brush their teeth and tie their shoelaces, I also taught them to look for joy within themselves and that, as The Beatles once said, “the movement you need is on your shoulder.” I wanted to make sure that when they grew up they’d be able to go to the movies, to a restaurant, on a trip, alone, and that the ability to enjoy it all was simply within themselves and nowhere else. They are both grown up now and it fills me with joy to see they learned that lesson well.
Being alone and feeling lonely... I hope that you, my dear friends, are able to tell the difference and enjoy your own company and that beautiful solitude.
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