It’s late and I can’t sleep. This is when the world feels heavy. When doing it all alone loses its charm. When I start to search for the answers that can only come from inside of me. When I have to admit, in the loneliest of hours that it is me. I am the reason that I am one of the ones that has never known true, unconditional, romantic love. And I wonder why, even though I know I Am Not the Only One, Why Do I Feel So Alone?
Now, before you think this is going to be a ‘woe is me’ piece, it is not. I have so so much to be happy about and to be thankful for that I spend most of my days loving life and feeling eternally blessed. The kids, my dogs, my house, my friends, my family… these are all amazing things in my life. I honestly have no real complaints.
But every once in a while, usually after a long day with a lot on my mind, I wish I were not sleeping alone once again. I wish that I knew what it was like to be able to talk to someone about life, problems, successes and general irritations without having to worry about whether they care about it or not. I wish that I could stomach watching a romantic comedy without tears rolling down my face. That I knew what people were talking about when they shared the feeling those little, private jokes cause with their partner.
The reality of the situation is that, at 44 years old, with three beautiful daughters and four rambunctious dogs, working from home, I don’t have the time or the energy, or the desire if I am really honest, to go out and find someone. I tried a few times, I did. Even online dating. Tries have actually been more damaging and destroyed what was left of my trust. It was a disaster. So that option is gone. Most of the time, that is just fine with me. Especially since I also know well the extreme loneliness a person can feel in a bad marriage. I certainly don’t want that again.
Then there are the times that I look around and I wonder why everyone else gets to know what it is like to be kissed at midnight on New Year’s Eve, what it is like to be asked out, taken out and to be respected. What it is like for someone to think I am worth the effort.
After all, my parents have been married almost 50 years. My sister almost 20. I have friends celebrating 10, 15 years and showing off all of their relationship accomplishments online. Truth be told, I do not know one other person in my circle or related to it that is totally, 100% single. I am it. The only one.
It feels like I am alone.
I am not, of course, none of us really are. There are always people out there who are feeling the same way we are. So, I also know that I am not the only one who suffers from loneliness from time to time. I see that on Facebook. This group of generally happy people that have really awesome things going on that hit the pillow at night, wishing they had someone to tell about it.
I am not the only single mom. I am not the only one who works from home, automatically eliminating adult conversation during the day. I am not the only one who feels the pressures of earning the income, paying the bills, dealing with issues with the house, the car, the kids, the schedules, the animals, the yard…. I am not. There are millions upon millions of people who do what I do and do it much better than I do. But when I have time to think, I feel it. That panic that I am the only one who will ever understand. The insecurity of accepting that my decisions may not be right. And then I feel guilty for feeling alone. It is almost as if the emotion itself is selfish.
I can’t be the only one. I cannot be the only person that feels like they are alone. I cannot be the only mom who feels the pressure of parenting alone and wondering if she is doing it right. I cannot be the only single woman who wonders why she is the one that never gets to experience unconditional, romantic love. I can’t be the only one who berates herself for past decisions which have led to her current situation.
I just can’t.
And yet I am.
Even if it is just in my head.