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Monday, June 23, 2014

Lonely but Never Alone

I can completely empathize with being famous and lonely. When I was younger though, I couldn't. I couldn't comprehend how a person could be lonely when an entourage accompanied them day and night. In these last few years I've realized that I'm just like them sans the fame (I'm working on it) and the size of our entourages.

I'm never, EVER, alone. I've had nurses since I was 2 years old. In school K-12 not only did I have a nurse for my personal needs, I also had an aide to be my hands in class. My “alone time” has always consisted of me sitting on the toilet or sitting in my room but even then someone is in the other room. Once in a blue moon I get 5 minutes in the car to myself when someone has to get one item at the store. I can't take walks by myself. Sure, I can speed ahead but I know that whoever is with me is only 50 feet behind. I can't go to the movies by myself, which doesn't seem like a big deal because my nurses have to do what I say. However, I like to try to be a considerate “boss” so I will only go to a movie if they want to see it as well. I can't travel by myself, which is my biggest issue since I desire nothing more than to see the world. I can't ever have a day where I just want to be on my own. As a teenager it bothered me the most because being with an adult most of the time robbed me of my rebellious stage. I did and do nothing on my own.

I suppose that's part of the reason why I'm lonely; due to the fact that I always had adults following me I've never had many friends. It's one thing to have people spend time with you because you pay them but it's another to have people do it simply because they cherish your presence. Of course, people like(d) me. And all through high school a lot of people knew me and if asked they would attest to being my “friends.” Yet, I was never invited anywhere and when I made the invitations they bailed. I went to many school dances on my own just to prove to my peers I didn't always have an adult with me. I always did my best at night, as far as my health went, and I figured if I started having issues I could get someone to call 911. High School was very confusing for me social-wise though upon graduating I realized I might not have made any true friends in school but I had a few great ones from other walks of life. My real friends show up in the hospital when I'm ready to be seen, they check up on me just because or because I posted some subliminal emo status, they support my goals, and most of all they enjoy spending time with me. Even though I have great friends it doesn't take away from the fact that my social life doesn't even compete with that of my able-bodied peers and sometimes I feel super lonely. Yet, the older I get the better am at focusing on what I do have as opposed to what I don't. A small circle of genuine friends is often preferable to a gaggle of flakes.

Being lonely at times without ever being alone is a confounding oxymoron. For those of you that can be truly alone learn not to hide from solidarity but grow in it. And those of you in my shoes, that are never alone, try to find comfort in the fact that even though you might experience loneliness there's someone out there that doesn't need to be payed to be with you.