Quiet, the often companion of solitude, can scare those not familiar with the tick of a clock. I used to have a rush of a life. Music on, chatter, and little alone time. I suffered instead of thriving amid the constant buzz, lost myself. And yet, some people are constructed differently.
There is no right way to live a life, only the one that works for you. It took me almost forty years to figure that out.
In the current climate of isolate and flatten the curve, I find myself oddly sensitive to the many people who are out of their comfort zones. They’re used to water coolers, drinks, or dinner out after work, hugs, and handshakes. They have friend groups, meetings, and they’re dating. I do not typically give these people much thought.
I assume they are out there being all Sex in the City or Friends. I know they are there under the twinkling lights of big cities or nestled into the corner of coffee shops arguing politics or plot twists, but they are them, and I am me. So why am I not satisfied that my natural way of being is trending, saving lives even?
Because I spent a great deal of my life going against my natural flow. I made myself social, put myself out there because that is what I was supposed to do. Social people are more successful. They make deals, and if I wanted to get anywhere in the world, I needed to be seen and at least appear to like it.
The places I didn’t belong were exhausting. I always felt off, and my groove or vibe or chi was all messed up.
It must be some kind of empathy or sympathy. One of those. Regardless, I feel for the upturn of lives and the sudden solitude. It is easy for me to blow it off and say, “Please, you have to stay home, so?” But, as with all things, the change for some is more complicated.
Many people don’t do well alone. Others rest on community for basic needs. Still, others become anxious or depressed in the solitude I adore.
Isn’t that strange how one person’s peace is another’s pain?
As a woman who spent some time in the wrong box, my advice to those socially and professionally misplaced as we take care comes from a man I’ve never quoted, but he’s kind of a big deal.
“Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise.”
Victor Hugo wrote that in Les Miserables. The world is undoubtedly in crisis, not French Revolution level, but people are out of work, struggling to keep working, losing, and missing their people.
There is nothing simple about this time but hang in there. A few breaths at a time, one day after another. We will make it through this, and instead of indifference, I will smile as I look for you once again in the glittering lights, crisp evening rumbles of laughter, and clinking glasses.
My thoughts from the laundry room. Wash the Sheets.