Sooner or later, life will throw you some curveballs. And it will suck. The question isn’t whether or not life throws you curveballs; it’s just a matter of when. Once life throws curveballs the question then becomes: How are you going to deal with it?
In everyday life, it’s completely normal to have down days. When we have those days, we are usually advised to pick ourselves up, perhaps by spending time with friends or simply going outside, but now things have changed. Life has thrown the biggest curveball at us, and the pandemic has taken over our lives. Now, it’s been nearly a year of lockdowns for everyone, and our time, energy, and brainpower are eclipsed by a million and one additional things that need to be decided, organized, and executed. What’s worse, this situation has taken an emotional toll on many people.
17 wonderful days
In my last blog post, you read about the love of my life and how we reunited. We hadn’t seen each other in two years, and suddenly, we felt the need to connect and relive the moments we had spent together in Vietnam. Since travel restrictions from Iceland to Austria don’t exist due to the low number of cases in Iceland, Elias had no trouble flying in to spend Christmas with me. So, that’s what we did.
So, before he came here, I spent most of my time in my home-office all alone, working and studying all day long. It didn’t bother me much, to be honest. But then we spent 17 days together, and it was 17 wonderful days, full of joy, fun, and intimacy. This resulted in deep emotions of love and trust for one another. Then the day of his departure came, and I felt low, already feeling the sense of loneliness. I cried A LOT.
And that is why, I filled the empty hole in my heart by spending time with my cousin after having breakfast at my aunt’s. Strategically a very wrong move. On the drive back to Salzburg, tears kept rolling down my cheeks as I had been ignoring that feeling all day long. It only got worse when I entered my apartment, and the memories of the fun moments we had spent together flashed by. I pulled myself together for our daily phone call, but he definitely noticed that I was sad and started comforting me.
When he said, “This is meaningful”, he was right. This feeling was not supposed to be dragging me down but rather giving me meaning in life. This thing that we had, the long-distance relationship, was tough. But it also gave us both so much meaning in life.
Anyone else get a crippling sense of loneliness sometimes?
When Elias left, the thought of spending my days in isolation was intimidating. I’m a student and a freelancer. I work from home, and due to the pandemic, all my classes are remote. This means I now often spend a whole week on my own. Most of the time, it doesn’t bother me, but sometimes it makes me feel very isolated.
After those days with Elias, I was not used to being alone anymore, and moreover, I was not made to be alone, even though I had always thought I was. And it’s true, we humans are social creatures, and I had just been hiding from everyone, in fear of being hurt by anyone.
So, now, I am sitting here, all alone in my apartment with the pandemic still haunting us. I ask myself daily, “Will this thing ever pass”? You can’t know how long till things will get back to normal, or if they ever will. Exam season is approaching, and the lack of social life is giving me even more time to contemplate this whole situation.
And I have finally come to a conclusion.
Thriving in your alone time
Although those low moments of loneliness can feel dark, they also make you so much stronger. Often, it’s when we’re feeling alone that we’re forced to go out of our comfort zone. Find a passion. Try a new hobby. Keep yourself busy. Push yourself to try new classes, and start doing things that make you happy. For myself, I’ve started this blog to write about my life, my adventures, and my feelings.
It’s time to accept the situation. The pandemic rules our lives for now, and we can only change what we can change. The time we all get to spend on our own now is there to help us learn how to truly be alone and be comfortable with spending time alone. And that is when personal growth happens. Solitude is not only crucial to personal growth, but if you make it through the low moments and start enjoying your own company, you will notice a difference in your thought processes. And trust me when I tell you, I’ve made the biggest steps of my life when I was spending time by myself.
So, stop focusing on what’s missing, and start focusing on what you can control and what you do have. Stop looking for what you need in other people and start finding it within yourself.
If you’re reading this and feeling lonely, pour yourself a glass of wine and put on your favourite music. Put on a film or your favourite show. Cook yourself a delicious dinner. If you can’t enjoy your own company, you know you have some personal growth work to do! Once you’re able to be your own best friend and have built that foundation within yourself and have already gone through periods of solitude and being alone, then no matter what curveballs life throws at you, you’re invincible.
So, let’s catch that curveball called COVID and use it as a tool to grow!
Need someone to talk to? Just hit me up on my social. I know these times are tough, but I also know that every human being out there is tougher!