Joining in with Five Minute Friday: this week’s word Alone.

[Andrew, I’m thinking of you and sending you all my most positive energy, hoping this is just a bump in the road for you]



I’ve always felt alone even in a crowd; I have that kind of personality. I enjoy my own company, am happy in my head, happy to sit, alone, and read. Most of my pleasures are solitary: reading, scrapbooking, painting, running, meditation. I’m not the life and soul of the party although I can be very entertaining if you get me talking about something I’m interested in. I like alone. Like the feeling of it. The wholesome, life-giving, solitariness of it.

It’s when alone turned in to lonely that I started having trouble.

I don’t like lonely. Lonely is a whole different ball game and we don’t get along.

Lonely is nasty, she’ll trick you, turn you against yourself, have you thinking dark dark thoughts, have you questioning your sanity. She’ll make you nostalgic, make you long for company, drag you to the depths of desperation, often throwing you over in to despair. She’ll maroon you there for a while, until you manage to claw your way back out.

I like alone yet when you’re lonely it’s hard, even, to be alone. She robs you of even those simple pleasures, so crafty and insidious she is.

When you’re lonely you’ll begin to hate being alone. You’ll question every decision you ever made, every facet of your personality. You’ll make resolutions: to invite people over more, to be more sociable, to  get out more (knowing you’ll never keep these resolutions only gives loneliness yet more power).

Slowly but surely, however, loneliness will propel you to make changes, to be more proactive, to seek company, to emerge from the despair, to live again, in however small a way feels manageable. You’ll feel like the little child on her first day at school, unsure, timid, wondering whether anyone will play with her, exploring something new, something intimidating.

It’s brave to face the days that brim over with loneliness. Scaling the previously unclimbed face, you’ll be unsure of your footing, unsure where the path will take you. But you’ll go anyway (knowing the alternative is too grim to consider). You’ll go, one small step at a time, one foot in front of the other, slowly emerging out of the shadows, the sun hurting your eyes as you blink to reveal new. 

New places. New friendships. New you. 

Thanks to the loneliness.


16 thoughts on “Alone

  1. Tara says:

    There really is a difference between lonely and alone. I enjoyed where you went with this post. I’m learning that I’m never alone. Visiting from FMF where I’m parked in the 9 spot.


  2. tammysincerity says:

    This was so well written that I had to read it again just to take it all in. I love how you describe loneliness. She is a friend we really don’t want! 🙂 (visiting from the FMF party at #63 today)


  3. Charlotte says:

    As always your writing moves me, I agree entirely with your post.
    You are so brave x


  4. Martha G. Brady says:

    great post helen! i loved it…the difference between alone and lonely? you described it well:)


    • iwillbloom says:

      Thanks for popping over and leaving a comment Martha…I also loved your post and am looking forward to reading your ’31 days’ posts, which sound like they’ll be very interesting. Helen


  5. Carrie Ann says:

    Well said!! I haven’t done a FMF in awhile but when I saw the word, I had to join in. Just like you I enjoy being alone, and yes there is a big difference from being alone and being lonely, as always your words and heart expressed it perfectly. Have a wonderful weekend!! xx


  6. Gabriele says:

    Helen, you defined loneliness so well. Personifying her makes it feel less desperate. I feel very much like you. Thank-you for your writing.


  7. graceglimmers says:

    “Scaling the previously unclimbed face, you’ll be unsure of your footing, unsure where the path will take you.” <—This word picture was my fave! Well done! Jenn, FMF


  8. I love how defined the 2 – alone and loneliness so perfectly. Also, how they intertwine at times – but how you ultimately turned it around to loneliness being a good challenging thing and ending with how it becomes a positive! Love it and you wrote it so eloquently. Blessings Helen. xoxo


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