Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Being Alone

I sat in therapy yesterday emotionally spent. And of course I cried. I always do, even though I still don't want to even after 19 months of therapy. As I knew he would, Ty said - you know this is a safe place to cry, why are you trying not too? And I do know it's safe there. Of all places I can let go, I can let go there. I know Ty prays for me and he helps me in therapy through the Holy Spirit. I know it's safe. Yet it's still hard. Even though this process has been long and hard it's been healing, but I am somewhat tired of it all.

I talked about my loneliness and need for friendship and how I felt my friends were closing out of my life due to moves and other circumstances. I felt as if a part of me was back where I started in the friendship department. I do know a lot of people. I have a lot of social connections. But I have very few deep friendships and have found them hard to maintain especially when life changes and people move or our life circumstances change. I have often looked at other women and I perceive that their relationships with one another are easy to maintain but mine are not. Ty reminded me not to judge that. What I see on the outside is never everything. I am still slightly envious of the relationships I see others have with the same sex. I still feel somewhat alone in this area.

As we continued to discuss this we talked about how lonely I felt and then Ty led me through a visualization that really helped me differentiate between loneliness and being alone.

As I closed my eyes and found a safe spot to visualize and we continued through the exercise, I felt the presence of the holy spirit almost lay completely on me. It was heavy yet peaceful. In the past I may have fought it feeling as if I were suffocating but the heavy presence was healing. As I felt him laying upon me, I was reminded that it's okay to be alone.

Perhaps that is what I have been missing in my solitude journey. The realization that I will be okay if I do not develop those deep and lasting relationships. It might not be perfect or exactly what I want, but being alone isn't the same as being lonely. I just have to learn to be at peace in my solitude and realize ultimately I am never alone.

The presence of the holy spirit comforted me and while the exercise itself was short I walked away from this session realizing how sweet the presence of God truly is.

I am reminded of the scripture in Hebrews 11:1. "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen". I cannot see God but I felt him. He sustains me in this journey. I feel alone but my faith reminds me I am never truly alone.

It's okay to be alone...
In my "aloneness" I turn to God...
Through that submissive turn I see God, I submit to God, I am healed by God...


Anonymous July 7, 2010 at 2:30 AM  


Steph @ Diapers and Divinity July 7, 2010 at 5:16 AM  

Leah, I don't know much about your situation, but as someone who has moved many times (and may be moving again now), I know how difficult that finding and losing friends process can be. It sounds like you have a great support in your husband, which is so important. I'm no professional, but I'll share one secret that has worked often for me and helped me form, build, and deepen relationships with others. I try to look for the vulnerability or suffering in other people that seem to have it all together on the surface. And when I find it/recognize it, I try to use it as an opportunity for service. I've learned that everyone has secret hurt, pains, struggles, and (almost) everyone appreciates someone reaching out to them in acts of kindness. Take dinner to some lady just because you heard she has sick kids. Show up and help someone fold laundry when they just got back from vacation and you know they're dealing with that overwhelmed post-vacation mode. I don't know, maybe these are dumb ideas, but if you pray for the opportunity to serve others, you'll find chances. And it will surprise you how some unexpected friendships will form. Sorry, I didn't mean to turn my comment into an advice column. I can tell you're already doing a lot of great things to work through this. And yes, sometimes lonely hurts. Can you imagine how lonely people feel when they don't even know God?

Leah July 7, 2010 at 8:04 PM  

Thanks Stephanie. I appreciate your words of wisdom. My therapist said something similar. He reminded me of how "strong" I was and if people were just looking from the outside would they really know me and what my issues were etc. Of course not for the most part even though I am striving to be more transparent.

I do appreciate your advice. :)

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