|J fishing by Alan Tun|
I observe my son, who is happy enough at his new school; however, he shows signs of being lonely and he's not made a connection with any special friend yet. While he, at age nine, is not old enough to grasp the content of this discussion, I'd like to share some strategy to overcoming loneliness, or at least that sense of 'aloneness' which arises every now and then in life.
Moving to a new place isn't the only time we may encounter loneliness. We may feel lonely when we hold sole responsibility, or when we experience a poignant moment in our lives, but have no one to share it with. Whether the season is a challenging one or a victorious one, in life's ebb and flow, we all fair better when we have others with whom to share the significant moments.
So, how do we get through those times when we feel lonely?
We can keep busy, but that only masks the problem, rather than solving it.
I find I feel lonely when I've got no one with whom to share my thoughts, so I overcome by writing. Whether I am writing to myself, my God, or my journal, I am taking the ideas and impressions that are inside me and putting them outside of myself. The specific audience is less important to me than the communication. For me, the inability to express my thoughts is what makes me feel lonely, so finding a way to express myself takes away much of the isolation.
Maybe that's why so many people blog! Is that what is at the heart of the billions on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest? In our need to find a way to express ourselves we take our opportunities though the forums provided.
Creative expression of any kind is a way forward through 'Alone Seasons'. I see it in paintings, sculpture, dance, stories. I think it was Earnest Hemmingway who wrote 'the' shortest story:
"For Sale: One Pair of Baby Shoes, Never Been Worn."
That would have been a very lonely moment for the character who lived that ad.
A sense of isolation can be with us, whether surrounded by friends or by strangers. When we are aware of it, I think we need to face that sense head on. There is an emptiness inside each of us that, until recognized and addressed, will effect our decisions and behaviour. No one feels completely fulfilled, accepted, peaceful, understood, heard all of the time. Those 'empty' moments are also opportunities. They are moments that give us time to reflect on, to take stock of who we are: our character, our attitudes, our ambitions and our purpose. I believe that if we never look inside we never really grow, and so I think those moments of solitude - aka loneliness - are an essential part of life.
I welcome solitude. I dislike loneliness. To me, they are simply the flip side of each other. Like sunshine and rain, they have an attractive aspect and an unattractive one. But both are essential to ensure growth to maturity.
My son is experiencing loneliness. I hope he'll learn much in the solitude. I also hope he finds a special friend soon. For both solitude and relationship are essential to life.
Until next Thursday, may you find special moments to enjoy - with a friend and with yourself...for you can be your own best friend.
Love and God bless to you this week. See you next Thursday... AND:
END NOTE: For those who haven't known me for long, and perhaps for some who have: You might enjoy my other blog:
Life from the Lighthouse -- all about what God shows me when He talks to me and I listen. New posts monthly on the 1st.
My website for the Self Publishing House is www.LarusPress.com where I blog on wholeness, witness, the Word of God and worship & warfare. Larus Press offers Christian-based books, blogs and literature to inspire, encourage, equip and empower your living spirit.
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