(Photo by Sophia Mullen April 4, 2014)
In my early years I had no doubt of my need to be alone. This was unquestionably obvious. I had little interest in playing with other kids especially in groups, and was most often found at a child size table in the corner contently painting, or else reading some work of fiction or encyclopedia and examining crawly things and taking solitary adventures outside, or in my head. A lonely child? Not until much later. I was a loner. Only when I lost my ability to connect with others in the times and the ways that I needed it did I become painfully lonely. It’s much easier for a small child to express themselves in the way that is needed than for an adolescent or adult. All my silent observing and thoughtfulness had me labeled as the ‘good kid’ and the ‘innocent one’, but later it became a ‘problem’. I just didn’t interact with the world in the way that is widely considered acceptable and normal. “Why don’t you go talk to people?” The truth is I had no interest in going up to someone and interacting with them. I just wanted to watch and then think over what I took in, and I would have been perfectly comfortable continuing this way had I not been made to feel that I should be different. When I was allowed to pop in and out as was natural to me I felt safe and taken care of, but the pressure to always stay, always contribute, always participate, drains me until I cannot speak because I am empty. This adds to the picture of abnormality and the creates the ‘problem’.
Why have I put so much detail into that explanation? Because in order to understand entering adulthood as an introvert, I need to understand how it worked when it was mostly untouched, before I started trying to fit in and adapt to an an “extrovert’s world”.
With the age of social media has come a wave of awareness of the more introverted and individualistic population, and finally we have an equal voice in our quiet solitude. Plainly put, being weird is cool.
So I will say it; I LOVE BEING ALONE.
I will add to that; I’m going to be by myself but I may sometimes allow you to come with me, in quietness, in gentleness. Observing in still presence, a fluent connection.
I am alone, but that’s how it should be. I’ve reached a point where I must abandon self denial and let myself be alone. Now I feel the urgent need to be unapologetically and enigmatically myself, in myself, by myself. I can feel the vibrations of the universe deliciously in the solitude of my mind.
I want to explore, taste, and know.
I need to escape.
…and there is peace.