You know, it is possible to “have somebody” and still be all alone. I lived in accompanied lonliness for a very long time. Things may have looked fine on the outside, but behind closed doors, a very different story unfolded. I hated anything that required mustering the energy to pretend that things were good. That’s what Valentine’s Day has meant to me, trying to muster the energy and enthusiasm to celebrate at least not being by myself, when so many others had no one.
Today though, I celebrate the freedom of being alone. I love, love, love walking into my apartment without knots in my stomach, without feeling the urge to search for clues for what’s been going on while I was gone, without having avoided home for the last 4 hours. I love, love, love being able to invite family and friends into my space without having to put on a false face, cover up and make excuses and try to make things appear to be something they are not.
It’s funny. I was afraid of being alone for fear that I’d be lonely, only to realize I was lonely all along. Do I still feel lonely at times? Of course. But my dignity is no longer a price I’m willing to pay for the illusion of togetherness.
I have found companionship in so many places, with so many wonderful friends and to each of you I say, Happy Valentine’s Day. I love you all to pieces!
Tania, Kwesi, Amani, Trina, Rick, Charmaine, Mike, Monique, Omar, Ricky, Shellie, Ericka, Jackie, Maureen, Nikki, Renae, Kris, Mom and Dad-Have a great day!
Be good to yourselves.