To plan, or not to plan, that is the question?
I feel like some planning is good. Not, you know, intense planning, but setting something’s just so, and then other things not-just so, and then watching it all fall into place. Otherwise it’s just confirmation bias.
I’m in a weird non-sequitur space right now. It’s one of those things that is and isn’t at the same time. Where the interjection of conjunctions is just the tiniest bit off, and my malapropisms are beautiful because I’m not putting an excess effort.
I’m fucking lonely tonight.
But that isn’t anything new. I am a lonely human. I have always spent time lonely. I have learned how to sit and be lonely…or rather, I have learned to sit and be alone; and if you don’t know the difference, well, good for you.
Being lonely is one of those things that is an acquired skill. It doesn’t come over night, either. Some days, you wake up to that absence – the abnegation (pretty) – of humanity. You’re just…aware that around you is the vacuum where people are supposed to be, and are, and it makes you very small.
And it is a very wide vacuum that has forced me, always, to consider my insignificance, to varying degrees of reflection.
When the loneliness isn’t solitude, when it’s active, it’s a clawing beast. It’s a sensation that don’t know is even possible. It’s like your skin being sewed onto your body a milimeter off…like a pair of jeans that keeps twisting the wrong way, so your crotch feels awkwardly placed. Your skin and muscles are just…wrong, and no matter which way you twist and turn, no matter how you adjust, that wrongness is a seeping wound of frustration.
But sometimes the loneliness is a blanket. Sometimes it’s really just solitude. It’s a comfort, a yawn, it’s the sensation of being warmly in love with yourself. It’s hot chocolate and a show to binge-watch. It’s the sensation of freedom.
My arm looks like a chain was taken off cause of my watch.
Sorry, that was me trying to be non-sequitur thematic. I’ll stop
But this loneliness it’s a little heavier tonight. Maybe gravid is the right word. The suggestion of pregnancy appeals to me in some perverse way. The air feels like an Andrei Tarkovsky shot from his slower films. Meditative, overlooking the abyss, being pushed down with perpetual weight and then…release.
But it’s ok, I’m used to it; and that doesn’t even feel like a denial anymore. It’s just…what it is. And I know that loneliness is some sinful state of being, in this culture. Maybe that isn’t appropriate, but it’s not a desirable state. No one in our culture tells you: Hey, it’s ok to be alone, unless you really need to hear it because life is a big ol’ bag of suck right now, and they don’t want you to harm yourself in despair.
But really, alone-ness is our natural state. And I champion the unpopular views – when it feels necessary – and the value of loneliness is often overlooked; mostly cause it’s called solitude, but whatevah.
When you’re in the shitty loneliness, all you can think of is how to get out of it. How badly you want to be somewhere else, anywhere else. You just need. to be. elsewhere. And hey, that’s ok.
But it’s like all things in the world: the harder you think about what you want, the more likely it isn’t going to happen.
It’s like some observer effect of some kind. The harder you reach, the more out of reach it is, like licking your elbow, or grabbing a laser; or hopefully not grabbing your shadow.
Loneliness of this kind is often self-perpetuating, and a positive feedback loop of shit. I’ve dealt with it regularly time immemorial. I don’t blame anybody for it, though, often, I’ve been told to blame myself for my loneliness.
I don’t begrudge – or try not to – people who tell you “you don’t have to be alone” or “if you don’t want to be alone, just talk to people”. For those people, I would like to share a tiny story.
I used to talk to people all the time. I would say “hi, what’s up”, I would make artificial efforts to fill the void that was my empty social life, staring and refreshing my computer regularly for some paltry notification that hey, my life had some validity to others, and I wasn’t completely fucking worthless.
Then, one day, I decided “Fuck it, I’m going to go a week without talking to people, and see what happens”.
Do you wanna know what happened?
Not a single person decided “hey, where is Eric?” and reach out. I had less to do, so I stared at my room, walked around, and waited for someone – literally anyone – to notice that I had stopped existing digitally: no one did.
If you’ve never done that, I recommend it; just spend 168 hours in isolation, unintentional preferable. It does things to you. It fucks you up and makes you furious in ways you didn’t even realize were possible. It makes you some micron in some grandiose indifferent cosmos, except even the people around you don’t care.
It hurts, man.
And I can’t say it didn’t make me bitter, or that I don’t get upset thinking about it now: it’s upsetting. Knowing that – at the time – I could go for a week without existing, invisible, unseen, unheard, and nothing changed, that’s a kind of pain you have to know to understand.
Fortunately, and I do mean it, fortunately, most people do not know what that feels like. Most people have a support structure, and people who care. Most people have friends who get worried. I have that now…at least more than I used to.
But more than that, I’m comfortable in my insignificance. I know that, even if I did matter, it would still be more or less a paltry state of affairs in the scheme of the cosmos. I love myself now: that makes everything easier.
But most of all, I love freely others, and I don’t make plans, and life tends to work itself out. It’s been around a lot longer than me, I figure it knows what it’s doing.
If you read my musings on nothing: thanks, I appreciate it.
If not, well, I’m sure you’re doing something better with your time.