Alone but not lonely
I have been alone this week. But not lonely. Well, no lonelier than when I am at home in a house filled with people.
I enjoy the calm of a studio guest house. The elegant house occupied by my nephew and his family sits across the brick paved drive, silent while they are in Hawaii. This is my experiment with living with and by myself.
Never in my life have I not shared living space. Never had a bedroom of my own. My sister and I were far enough separated by age and temperament to allow me personal space at a desk.
My first desk was a child-size roll-top, purchased second-hand from a neighbor for my 13th birthday. It would be juvenile for the 13-year-olds of today. But I was ecstatic.
I sat at that desk away from the chaos of a full house to complete homework, to write in a journal, to log. . .what? Maybe grades? I loved organizing the cubbies and the drawers. It was my space.
I now sit at the desk in this quiet studio and write. The only sound is the steady breath of the air conditioner. At this moment I am not lonely. I am aware that aloneness is a physical state; loneliness is emotional.
It is easy to live with aloneness. I haven’t mastered loneliness.