How did it happen-
the only one alone here;
Me. Again. Of course.
Walking the damn line-
Praying for spiritual strength
And fast Benedryl.
I have previously written about loneliness, here. It is interesting to me how loneliness changes and presents itself; and in what situations. I have often lamented in real life and all forms of my “virtual” life that communication is becoming less personal, like AI. No longer are skills like reading people, situations, exchanging energy, gazes that inspired poets, as valued…or learned. There is an entire generation growing up, (socially disadvantaged in my opinion) without making eye contact, without interacting, without the time or distance to be mindful about what they say or how they react to things. We cause ourselves anxiety over not getting likes, not getting responses back, etc. In our effort to feel a part of something, we make ourselves apart. We can be in the same room as someone and not even look at them. Cursory, rote greetings have become a standard. We sit at restaurants with our loved ones and don’t make eye contact… with our lovers, our parents, our kids.
We get some sort of a chemical addiction to the instant gratification… Our Pavlovian response encourages us continue the high… the goddamn blue bubbles of solace. But we may have someone LITERALLY right next to us. And yet, we seek communication from the ether…We have a cognitive dissonance about the links between loneliness and being alone. Because those of us, with the privilege to have technology, have created a culture of slumber parties consisting of a group of adolescents snapchatting each other from the same room, no one looking at the stars unless they can get a pic of them, instagram, pinterest, etc. We are past the point of sexual revolution gratuitous hook ups, online dating, facebooking, pornography, vines, vaguebooking, comparing ourselves to real and imagined foes, stalking, bullying, trolling, sexting, mentally checking out, gaming, hunting, shooting, racing, battling, flying, etc….
It truly makes me very sad. For us all. Now granted, I know #noteveryperson whatever. BUT we are going that way and very fucking fast. I am guilty. You are too. You are reading a goddamn blog that was either in your email, on your twitter, on your facebook, googleplusokcupidpinterestKiKtindergrindrzoosk, whatever the fuck. You didn’t come looking for a blog by Jani B.
I am lonely a lot. And upon a lot of alone and lonely time countered with a lot of around people and still lonely time, I have realized it is not the being alone part that bothers me, it really is the loneliness. When you have an entire manic world in your head to talk to someone about and no one asks. When you spend all day giving and giving to people who are not in a position to give back, and you are spent, lonely. When you have an amazing day and want to share it with ANYONE but all that is available is social media..or yourself… When you are in an office full of people, all day, all week, and unless it is a client or someone needing something, no one talks to you. When you shut off your Facebook and the only people that contact you now are family members wanting to know if you blocked them specifically. I am lonely at times around friends because I am either so up in my own head that I am not really interacting with them or they are so engaged with someone else my introvertedness makes me wilt and seem disinterested.
I have always prided myself on my communication and intuitive skills. Technology however, has made me crazy, made me anxious. I am happy that I grew up in an era where real life communication skills were more important than properly formatted for office politic emails. Back in the good ol’ days when you didn’t abbreviate much and spelling counted, in love letters, gossip notes, poetry, cards, and invitations. When you used words, those oh so important words, combined with physical existence, body language, and observed emotion, not texted emoji.
I think that is why so many elderly couples die so close together or remarry so quickly. The loneliness. So many losses…having someone breathing next to you at night, someone that no matter what is going on out there, you know you have someone to share with here. The loss of that must wreck havoc on the soul, the heart, the immune system. I know what I experience after not having that for a much shorter time than the elderly couple I imagine. I cannot even fathom what it would be like after 30, 40, 50 years.
I fear for the current and future generations. Those with the skinniest thumbs and curviest necks will evolve via natural selection in an unnatural way. Homo Curva. That’s the next evolutionary leap.
L.M. Montgomery said that “Only lonely people keep journals.” I have to agree. I grew up keeping a diary which I later called a journal (so much more sophisticated) and a book of poems…I started in 4th grade. I found my solace and friends in books, regardless of who wrote them. We moved a lot and always lived in the middle of BFE, so my siblings and my horse were my only constant companions. Social scientists say now that we social media junkies are narcissists, that we think every thought we have is a gem. I don’t think I have breached that point, yet. I share a lot of news and observations, not a lot of “I just ate a banana.” ” I just took a sh*t.” “I just turned on my computer,” crap. But I think it is more of a matter of loneliness we feel, wanting to feel connected to the world, rather than a matter of narcissism.
Now granted, I realize there is a generation full of wannabe Snookis and JWOWWs, but I am speaking of the people who aren’t fame seeking, oversharing whores. Just the ones who feel that they want to connect with someone besides themselves, to know that others feel the same way they do. Myself, I haven’t journaled truly since I got my first Myspace, I wrote a lot of notes then. I printed them off when I closed my account and I kept them in a notebook. Facebook has provided a sort of venting platform and twitter is amazing for quick little blips, updates and links to news stories.
BUT this blog: this blog has become my new journal. I still have my poetry book (number 4 at this point in my life) and I write in it often. I share a few of those poems here, but really they are mine. Not really fit for human consumption. Maybe after I am dead. I try to keep the blog knowledgeable for the masses, cathartic for me, and vague enough when referencing real people that only those people and a very select few realize whom I am actually speaking of. Its my mini-therapy.
I suppose I am lonely.
But you are reading this, so maybe you are too.
This world keeps getting smaller, yet the spaces between us keep on growing.