Sometimes On Saturday Nights I Get Lonely…

I think loneliness is like the dark side of the moon…

… a mysterious state of mind that rises when we are empty, when there is a place for thoughts to arise. During these times depression sometimes washes over me and feels unmanageable. I know that I am not alone in this. It is that very knowledge that makes me feel less lonely. We are never really alone. You are in your house and I am in mine. Two of the pugs went racing through the dog door outside and are barking at things I cannot see or hear. Even though it is 11:00 at night the 2 youngsters, Tanner and Pugsley, are in and out that door like it is the middle of the day. Dear old Sam is barking inside, just feet away from me, having his say, but at 13 he’d rather do it from the comforts of the soft world inside. Wee little Penny is asleep on my feet on top of the fluffy afghan.
When dark times arise I think it is good to acknowledge them, feel them, feel it all to ease our way through it. Some nights I have had a glass of wine, usually sipping half and putting the rest back in the refrigerator. It just makes me sleepy. I’d rather feel the hollowness inside and see where it leads. It leads to mysterious places, sometimes, like that side of the moon we never see.
I thought I might just let my mind wander and ramble a bit here to clear the way back to a comfortable solitude. My favorite writer and dear friend May Sarton once wrote, “Loneliness is the poverty of self; solitude is the richness of self.” Mostly I live in solitude but we all slip into loneliness at times. Saturday nights seem to be the time when the ache of that existential loneliness that we all feel at times rises for me. Not every Saturday, but some. It is the time I miss my love who is currently far away. But the pugs are here, and I am shored up by their sweetness. They are not happy that I am writing this late. They don’t know what to do. Usually when I do write late I am writing on my laptop on the couch so they can be in their usual places where we all belong at night, snuggled together with pillows and covers, but my laptop went kaput and the new one has not arrived yet. I took a long hot shower to change gears and thought sitting here for awhile to share my thoughts with you might be comforting, and it is.
I just got up to turn off the overhead light thinking the dogs would settle down but they all jumped up and ran around in circles and headed into the living room relieved. When I came back and sat down they looked perplexed and did the pug head tilt which is so cute it made me smile. I said, “Mama won’t be long,” and I think Sam shrugged. Penny got back on my feet and all three of the boys headed into the chair they pile into together having pretty much given up on me for the time.

I once wrote “Loneliness has eaten so many holes in me I feel like a piece of Swiss cheese.” That was during a particularly lonely time many years back when my days were more dark than light. Those were the days when depression weighed me down like a paper weight on a pile of letters. I don’t get depressed like that any more, but I do get melancholy. When these times rise now I chart the days just past to see where the trail might have led. Sometimes I think we are supposed to get to this place so that we will stop long enough to reflect on where we are in our life.

Where am I? I realize as I am writing this that it is most likely that I am on a plateau. I was very busy from May through October studying, working on all that will one day lead me to the healing practice I think I am supposed to have, but then that familiar state rose once again and the thought of leaving home engulfed me, overwhelmed me with such fear I could barely breathe. My teacher said “Breathe Maitri, you have to breathe.” I am borderline agoraphobic. I say borderline because I can now go out a little more for short periods to do errands but I am home as soon as possible with a sense of relief that almost always leads me to the couch under a soft cover and a pile of pugs. The world is so big and I am so sensitive that the reverberations of the outside world become too much. I have canceled appointments. I have put off one day something that perhaps I could do tomorrow if it means having to go out to do it, but tomorrow comes and a long string of tomorrows follow until the day comes when I have to go out and a pile-up of errands must be done. Sometimes the refrigerator is almost empty. Sometimes my meds have nearly run out and that can’t happen. Sometimes there is a package to mail and it is the 11th hour when I can finally get to the post office which I dread. It’s funny,. I never used to feel that, but sometimes standing in line feels interminable. I am not impatient, I just feel crowded in by the people around me. I feel afraid.

I do not write these things because I feel sad about them, I write them to attain clarity for myself, and to let you, dear reader, know that if you feel your own form of loneliness, fear, sadness or whatever might be rising in your life that it will pass. Just writing this I do not feel that aching emptiness any longer. My body has relaxed into the chair and the little pug on my feet has grounded me.

It has been awhile since I have updated this blog but it hasn’t been for lack of trying. I have started numerous entries only to see them peter out and trail off into that pile of writings that lead to dead ends. All of this past week I have been playing a You Tube video, an older one, of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young singing the old song, “Teach Your Children.” For those of you who are too young to know it, you can click on the link to the video. It is a deeply touching song, especially for one who has been a parent, and a child, and a daughter. Here are the lyrics if you can’t understand all the words. Listening to the first line of the song over and over — “You, who are on the road, must have a code, that you can live by…” — I became stuck, and then almost obsessed, trying to figure out what I would call the code I live by. I have yet to figure it out. I can tell you what I believe, what is important to me, how I hope to live and what I want dearly to achieve in my life, but I can’t think of anything that I consider a “code.” This has left me perplexed all week. I’m still trying to understand. It seems an important key to something but I can’t figure out what. So I keep playing the video over and over again and I get teary every time I do. Parents teaching children, children teaching parents, the song moves something so deep inside of me, and so many others feel the same that I have talked to this week, that I wonder if it is something that matters more once you reach middle age and can look back at the whole picture. The picture to date anyway. I have tried to write that entry many times and given up. It remains a mystery to me.

The pugs have settled down and gone to sleep in odd places all around me. It is almost midnight and they look so very dear, just wanting to be near me, but too tired to stay awake. I got cold and reached down for my shawl but Sam is asleep on it so I grabbed an old sweater nearby and slipped it on. I will be with them soon. I can’t wait to snuggle them.

Tonight I am waiting to hear if a 5th little pug will come to live with us. I won’t have more than that at one time, and I would dearly love to have her here with us. She is a one year old little black girl. My first pug ever was a wee little black girl named Babs and I lost her, at 16 1/2, a year ago last June. I can’t believe she’s been gone a year and a half. If not this little girl I will adopt another one. The right one finds its way into my home and heart when the time is right.

The pugs are starting to snore and that is one of the most comforting sounds to me. I have had a lifetime of nightmares from childhood trauma, but with four little ones asleep around me snoring in a harmonious chorus I go to sleep many nights smiling. I think I will tonight as well, and I usually fall asleep with at least one hand resting on warm fur. It’s like sleeping with living breathing teddy bears, these soft little dogs so full of love they snuggle up to me just wanting to be close. It’s hard to be sad or lonely for long with a house full of the wee folk. I think it’s time for us to head to bed. I don’t have to wake them. No matter how deeply they seem to be asleep as soon as I move they are all up like a shot, and off we go.

It has been a melancholy evening, but now it feels mellow and soft and sweet. If we just hang on long enough and immerse ourselves in things that wrap us as if in a warm blanket of comfort we get through. Tonight writing to you has helped me. I thank you for that.

Tomorrow is another day. If Saturdays are sometimes lonely I love Sundays. Sunday mornings fill me with a kind of joy that leads almost to ecstasy. It is a holy day to me, a day of deep meditation, of gratitude, a time of remembrance, a time to look forward and make plans, a day that I always seem to just be glad to be alive. I don’t know why Sunday, but Sunday it is.

My eyelids grow heavy and I, too, look forward to sleep. I will head in with my crew of teddy bears and sink into the covers with my dear little souls all around me. Tomorrow is another day. Ah, 12:02, it is already a new day. Sunday is here. I smiled when I wrote that. The fog has lifted.

Goodnight, Sweet Dreams, Sleep Tight…

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Comments

  1. Maitri you are the most beautiful writer. I’m so glad I found your blog, so glad you have the courage and wisdom to share your deepest thoughts and feelings with us. Autumn is a time for reflection, for looking back… whether it’s the autumn of our year, or the autumn of our lives. Much love to you and your family of little ones.

  2. Sharing is indeed “self-therapy” – when it comes down to it, we are all individual islands in the archipelago of humanity. Sadly, those unable to reach out often perish. Peaceful Blessings, Maitri!

  3. To anyone reading this I most sincerely apologize if you have written me a beautiful, kind response in the past and I have not answered. I read and cherish them all, but it has been a couple of years of just hanging on and moving forward when sometimes writing the entry took all that I had. I promise that I will be diligent about answering every dear person that comments now. I know how much it means. I hope you will forgive me and this will be changing now.

    Love and blessings to each and every one of you…

    Maitri

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