Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Alone but not Lonely

(Gay) Mormon Guy's post about Fitting In prompted me to write the following. I figured I might as well share it here and ask for your thoughts and insights.

Hey MG, 

First of all since I don't know your name, I hope you're OK with MG as nick name. If not let me know and I'll abide by your wishes.

Second, I relate to your post. Even when I am among friends and family, I sometimes feel the same as you, like I don't fit it. So here's the little talk I sometimes have with myself. "You are unique. You are one of a kind. Even if you had an exact twin, your spirits would be different. Enjoy the difference, but also be aware of how much we share. All of us on this planet are brothers and sisters. We are all subject to hunger, thirst, fatigue and loneliness. None of us is exempt, but no matter what our situation at any given moment, we have opportunities to respond, not just to react, but to draw upon our God-given talents and abilities and feel the connection we share with the other mere mortals in our proximity." 

Third, do I always do this? Of course not. It is an ideal. But it is worth striving for. Some people may characterize this approach as "fake it until you make it" but that's not what I'm advocating. I'm saying that sharing our authentic and sometimes vulnerable feelings can sometimes help another person and ourselves feel more at ease, more accepted.

Fourth, at this moment I am sitting in a darkened room. A small amount of light is glowing from my laptop screen. The other light is from the Christmas lights hanging outside my windows. I've opened all the blinds so I can see the snowstorm. I am alone, but I don't feel lonely because I know you'll be reading this message later, and although we've never met I consider you a friend. 

Fifth, I know that conditions outside are cold and dangerous, but I choose to see the beauty. The room would be warmer if I closed the blinds, but then I'd miss the beauty of the storm. I hope this finds you warm and happy. I hope it will brighten your outlook in someway and I hope you will know and feel that you are not alone.

(End of Message to MG)

So what do you think? How do you deal with fitting in or not fitting in? How do you feel when you're inside and you know that snow is softly falling outside?


  1. Ned - I fit with one person at a time. I fit on some levels with the LDS church, and I dont fit on others - but these are social and emotional. Sometimes (like with this monster snowstorm we just had here in NYC) I feel better staying inside and just watching. But, then I realize that that is what I am doing with my life - staying inside and not taking a risk by going "outside". I have also come to realize that friendships, even community, are to be found here online. And while they are not as powerful as in person, I no longer discount them. They ARE important. They have worth. Martin

  2. Ned - thanks for your comment, and for counting me a friend. It's nice to know that I have friends who care, even when we've never met. But I may take you up on your jogging offer. Did you get running shoes for Christmas?

  3. Is it "fake it until you make it", implying that if you keep trying hard enough it will get better? Or is it "fake it until you explode", implying there is no getting better?

  4. MARTY: I'm glad you have found that to be the case. In an either/or world, I would opt for face-to-face, but I don't think it's an either/or world. I think we can have both and with balance, that can bless our lives and others.

    MG: No I did not get the shoes, but fortunately I did get some cash for Christmas so they're still on my list. I really do need the exercise, now more than ever. How much do you run?

    BECK: After you explode, you'll feel a great sense of relaxation and well-being, depending on the type of explosion, of course. :D

    TO ALL: A belated Happy New Year!