I used to be okay with my loneliness.
I am and always will be a very independent person. However while visiting family and friends last weekend a wise woman told me: “It’s okay to be a strong woman, but don’t let the walls you build block the love from coming through the gates.” To say the least, it was like a smack in the face. I suddenly realized that this is what I have always been doing. I barley even let the love seep through the cracks in my walls. As like any other person I have my story – with many chapters written and still unread – but I failed to see that some of the scars in those chapters were affecting me.
Suddenly I was confused. Its been a long time since someone said something that so profoundly affected me. I kept a straight face (like always) to not let her see my reaction to her words. That night I did a lot of inner reflection, walking myself in circles acknowledging my self built walls and the small tightly bolted gate. I knew then that I had no idea how to begin the deconstruction of my own inner prison.
My loneliness had become a void.
It even has a way to sneaking into the lyrics of my songs –
The demons in me
Revel in the darkness I breed
Embraced by my own walls
In this hell there is no gate
So at which point do I escape
From this self built prison
I find that I am doomed by fate
To a life of my own company,
With these shadows of demons that are mere pieces of me;
Let me give you a little background story of the people we were visiting before delving into my next point;
I have known the people my mom, little brother and I were visiting my whole life. My mom being best friends with the mom of this family -lets call her Mrs.K. My mom and her were pregnant at the same time with me and Mrs.K’s eldest son – whom we will call CB. I am only 3 month older than him. To say the least, CB and I still get threatened with the baby pictures/video of us in the bathtub together where we technically shared our first kiss (cue the excited parents behind the camera coaxing their one years old’s to do this). We were both haunted by this as young children when each time we visited our mom’s would drag out the video and force us to watch in utter embarrassment with the rest of our families. Now us both at the age of 21, this no longer happens because being a baby long ago doing things your parents tell you is no longer embarrassing but funny. Now instead they just joke to me about wanting us to get married so that my mom and Mrs.K can be sisters (insert eye roll). Oh, and the wise woman I mentioned above would be CB’s Aunt who I met a year ago.
This time, when visiting Mrs.K and family, was different. I guess as I grow older it would be different because I no longer see them as often. I had not seen CB in three years and here is where I begin to delve into my next point. We have known each other our whole lives, but at the same time we barely know each other. I don’t exactly feel awkward around him, however when I had to meet his girlfriend it got all sorts of awkward. With my job I meet new people all the time and it never fazes me but I happen to have a strong intuition and sense others’ emotions very well. So when I sensed how awkward she felt meeting me, along with how awkward he suddenly felt, I couldn’t help but feel awkward.Thank goodness I hide this very well and pulled through, introducing myself and shaking her hand (she has a dead fish handshake….pet peeve of mine). Although I could not understand why this experience was all so awkward!
After that it was strange. He drove my family back to the hotel and made me give him hug. I hate hugs – but with the words still reeling in my head about not letting my walls block love out – I complied. Jokingly he basically squeezed the air out of me and hugged me a little too long for my own comfort.
After everything that first night visiting them, I was suddenly all too aware of the empty loneliness I held onto.
The second night didn’t allow me to ignore my ever present loneliness. Mrs.K and her family had just that afternoon had to attend a tragic funeral of a young relative. They were all mourning this death and so we all decided to have drinks in honor of the lost life. All us adults got quite drunk – but a good drunk. It was the first time CB and I had truly talked since we have both become adults. I also came to notice a connection we shared from having known each other for so long. We may not have known each others personalities all to well anymore, but at the same time there was a realization to me that we knew things about each other that no others besides family would know and it was simply because we have known each other our whole lives. We laughed about our first kiss that was caught on video and how we used to fight over who was driving the little tykes car as children.
Nearing the end of the night this connection I noticed began to scare me, as if it threatened the walls I held so dear. Before saying goodbye I joked telling him to have a good life as I may not see him again – because I plan to travel the world for a while. He came back with a “yeah right, I’ll see you again.” Then after I responded saying perhaps I would visit again on my days off, he said “so maybe I have another chance then.” To say I was shocked by his comment may be an understatement and it was good I was drunk or I wouldn’t have deflected it so easily with a laugh. Now thinking about it the next day was the most shocking part as I thought about what that comment meant. He has a girlfriend that he is happy with, isn’t he? It also came clear to me that this connection I noticed, he also had. But upon thinking about it the next day I realized I had underestimated the strength of it.
Now thinking back on his Aunt’s wise words to me, I felt and became – once again – all too aware of my comfortable loneliness and how quickly I allowed myself to reject any sort of love. But I also came to the realization that until he had said that to me, I had opened the tightly locked gate inside me. I don’t think that, even with any of my previous boyfriends, I had let that gate open.