Monday, 2 April 2012

The Human Condition

There are some things we never say out loud because we don't like the way it sounds. Things like "This isn't working." "I live with my parents." or the biggie... "I'm lonely." But are these the very things we need to start saying aloud? Do we need to acknowledge the negatives in our life in order to turn them into positives? Are we simply being protected by pride or held back by vanity?

This onslaught of heavy-thinking was brought about after a weekend in bed with the flu and a session with my Sex and the City boxset. In the episode All or Nothing, Samantha; the strong, independent, man-eater of the group, also catches the flu. She says "There are two types of guys out there - the ones that hold your hand and the ones who fuck you. And the ones that fuck you aren't worth a damn. We're alone."  This struck a particular chord with me dear readers (and not only because I had neither a man to hold my hand or... well... you catch my drift!). Looking in the mirror, in the midst of all the sweat and snot, I finally understood the phrase, "She has a face only a mother could love." and gazing at my ghastly reflection I doomed myself to an eternity of life in the boxroom, alone and lonely. Because, despite being dutifully nursed by my mother, that is exactly how I felt - lonely. I am definitely at my most maudlin when I am ill. I played Jeff Buckley on repeat and stared into space until my eyes hurt. 

Now that I am back to full health I can attribute my feelings of loneliness to "just feeling sorry for myself." But should I? I hark back to my original quandary: Are we protected by pride or held back by vanity? Pride will mean I'll brush off my feelings from last weekend, smile and soldier on and in doing so I'll save myself a lot of difficult conversations. Cue reactions from friends, "Oh you're lonely... Emmm, I'm not really the hugging type of friend." or even worse "Your loneliness is pathetic." 
However, determined not to be held back by vanity I voiced my loneliness and I was not greeted with awkward responses but genuine concern and some cheer me up flowers and a card. Once I'd said it, I felt better. My cold subsided, the weather changed and I felt positive again. March has been an interesting month. Unfortunately I am another year older and the older I get, the more contemplative I become.  It has been one roller-coaster of a year and I cannot begin to express how much has changed. I suppose part of that change has been recognising myself as an individual again; spending a lot of time alone with my thoughts and asking myself what I want from life. Nearly a year on from the break up and the birth of my quarterlife crisis I am still asking myself those questions and learning to accept that I may be asking those questions for some time... And p.s. yes, sometimes I get lonely. 
Why is admitting you are lonely so taboo; the fear of failure? I know so many people who are unhappy or unsatisfied yet they soldier on, keep up appearances because they'd rather be unhappy than be lonely. A lot of people this year have said I'm brave - I wonder if it's because I have faced their biggest fear? This has been the most difficult post I have written. Partly because of vanity and partly because I wasn't exactly sure what the point of this post was but I think I see it now... while pride has its place, it is definitely okay to feel lonely, or sad or lost. Nobody is strong all of the time; we're only human after all.

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