I Believe in Solitude
Walking the neighborhood streets of my new adopted homeland, the quietness is unsettling. I had just moved from America to England hoping to expand my cultural awareness. I look at the houses as I walk past hoping to see a welcoming face to help ease my homesickness, but all I get are a few curious glances without any acknowledgement of my existence. “I’m probably trying to hard to fit in,” I think to myself.
Fifteen years later, my transition period seems complete. I have s few acquaintances that I have met through my job, but still no real friends. Certainly none that I would share my deepest secrets with, but I am content and would not have it any other way. At first, the gregarious side of me had a difficult time adjusting to the aloneness surrounding me. I’d see people walking down the street laughing and carrying on conversations that I was not a part of. The postman became my most welcome guest each morning as he pushed the mail through the slot and it landed on the floor. I sorted through it expectantly hoping for letters with air mail stickers from back home. Nowadays, the letters have become less frequent, other than the usual Christmas and birthday cards. I guess friends and family have become used to my absence as I have theirs, but the love that connects us is as strong as ever. I finally am able to hear her speak.
I cherish my quiet time alone. Solitude has a language all it’s own that I was never able to understand until now. I am able appreciate the little things that I once took for granted. I look forward to the daily visit by my little robin who sits by my window and serenades me each morning. He watches me as I eat my toast knowing that I will save the last crumbs for him. Stepping outside into my garden, I am surrounded by new life. The buds on my magnolia tree and the tadpoles in my pond remind me of the cycles of my own life. I have become my own best friend. I think I knew her all along, but I ignored her company in favor of a more boisterous crowd. We now meet daily for an hour or two sharing our deepest thoughts. Now that we have reconnected, I will never let her go again.
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