Wednesday, 30 July 2008


There are sometimes when the bleeding obvious bites me on the nose, that I wonder why it's taken me so long to spot something.

Today is a case in point.

Whilst I've been staying with my beloved friend in Philly, she has had to going out to work each day. And I have, therefore, been alone all day.

So this has meant that she has come home every day to a clean kitchen and laundry done. That I have got through five books. Have done the shopping, been to the pool,and caught the train into Philly to meet up with her after work.

But it has also meant that I have spent a lot of time on my own, and this evening this has really got to me.

I've been feeling really low and couldn't work out why. On the most obvious level, it's because I go home tomorrow and don't know when I will be able to afford the next airfare.

It was bigger than that though.

One of the things I have missed terribly whilst I've been here, is my sons. And normally when I go away I always speak with them but don't ache to see them.

Today when I went to the pool, after my swim I sat in the sun, by the end of the pool that the boys and my friends sons used to play in, for the many years that they used to come over here with me. I could see their shadows jumping in and out of the water. I could hear their shouts and laughter. I felt very sad for those long gone times.

When I get home my eldest will pick me up from Manchester and take me home. I do not know how long he'll stay before he goes back to his base in Liverpool. I would really love it if he's around till Sunday so we can all have lunch together. Which for me will be affirming of our little family unit.

So what I was beating myself up about was why was I feeling so miserable and lonely and hating being so lonely. For the last 23 years I have loved being alone. It's been treasured time and I have relished every moment that I was able to get that time.

And what I have now is of course empty nest syndrome. My beloved boys aren't around anymore in the same way as when small , they don't need me to mother them in the same way as when they were little. So the treasured alone time was a treat in a busy life as a single mum bringing up my sons. As yet I haven't found anything to replace that emotional busyness.

I am an exceptionally busy person, I'm never happier than when I don't have time to breathe in a day. But all this frenetic activity that I fill my life up with, is a way to stave off those times when I've nothing in my life emotionally that needs me.

And it has been sitting on The Porch today that has brought that realisation to me.

It probably also goes a long way to make sense of my passion for falling in love!!! I know that I love being in love, and do not use it it in a healthy way , but more in a way to pre-occupy myself from facing the aloneness in me.

So that's it, the bleeding obvious...... Now all I've got to do is work out how I turn it round inside myself, so that aloneness is a pleasure again and not a fear. And that I can get a better balance on my feelings rather than a full on running away from them.

One life changing decision is already made, as my youngest son and I will be getting another dog as soon as I can sort it. Which will mean that when i come home to my endlessly empty house there will be a furry friend to speak to and care for, something I know will help enormously, as it did when we had our other dog.

So that's the practical taken care of , just the existential to sort now!!!!!


Sorrow said...

Dexter sat on the porch swing today, and watched me as i had my tea. It was a treasured moment of alone time, as the bobbins were here and there.
So I know, in my heart, that some day i will miss them streaking through the house , dancing circles round me.
I just hope that I can realize it, and find it as quick as you did.

Walker said...

Sometimes we need someone to share with.
I live alone and have for the last 9 years.
There are times I would like some company other than the cat.

It's a double edges sword.
The cost of freedom sometimes is loneliness where the cost of company is the loss of freedom.
The question is where is the dcomfortable middle in it all.

Yeah I am thinking of getting a dog to LOL

Have a safe trip back home and keep warm with the knowledge that your boys will always be there when you need them to be.

Ronjazz said...

You consistently offer to yourself, my dear, a sense of the old adage "Physician, heal thy self." You often will talk about what's on your will reason through it in a wonderfully emotional and still analytical way...and you arrive at a different place than when you started the car. That's a real talent, to be able to reason through things for your own wellbeing like that. Damn, you're smart!

And pretty, too...:)

sparrow said...

Time to move to Arizona?


You are loved.

Anonymous said...

We're all capable and very allowed to feel lonely once in a while. Hope you will be okay.

CJ xx

Milkmaid said...

I'm sure a dog would be good, I sit and watch my teenage daughters and try to 'fix' memories in my head well aware that the time will soon be when they flee the nest. It's one of the reasons I decided to 'out' to work as well as just working here, so i have something when I'm not depended upon as now.

Westerwitch/Headmistress said...

We all need company from time to time. What you are talking about though . . . I think . . . is internal and external locus of evaluation and in your case external locus of being needed. But you know all that and it is something you are working through. You need to be ok with you and not be ok with you because someone needs you . . . ie justifying your life, by your usefulness. Being alone and still is scary because then we get the chance to really see inside.

Gawd sorry it sounds as though I am being smugly clever - I'm not - but I am in a similar place to you so I can empathise . . .right I'll shut up now!!!!!
I love the saying we are getting there . . . always getting there . . . gawd help us when we arrive . . .

Irene said...

I am 53 years old and just recently started living on my own with my dog and my three cats. I must admit that it agrees with me very well and I feel that I have finally found my proper way of existence after never having lived alone. I think I will never invite a man into this life, but there will always be a dog. I have no need for passion, but I do for quiet contemplation and lots of breathing space. I hope that is your decision in the end.

Fire Byrd said...

Sorrow, my dear finding it is one thing , dealing with it quite another!

sage words about freedom Walker and very true.

ah Ron you always know how to make me smile with your compliements.

pixie,sweets there's no sea near Arizona otherwise I'd be there. Well if I could live in an air conditioned bubble at all times.

cj, I will be ok, just gotta find a way through that works for me.

welcome milkmaid, yep those memories need taking out of the special box they are kept in and polishing every once in a while.

WW, those are wise words, thank you. I know I need to look to my own resources rather than externalise my needs, but it's eaesier said than done sometimes.

Irene , welcome. What I want is to be able to accept how my life is and get pleasure form it , rather than fretting for something I can't have whatever that might be.

DJ Kirkby said...

You are so effervescent that I am certain this won't trouble you for longer than you can cope with. Your natural attitude seems to be one of sheer joie de vivre and so I hope that you will soon find your spark again. xo

Fire Byrd said...

dj, you're right I do bounce back quickly. And once I shift the post holiday blues I'll be dancing round the kitchen again.... might need to clean it first though!!

MarmiteToasty said...

I was thinking more along the lines of getting a llama :)


Fire Byrd said...

welcome miss marmite, yep a llama sounds good, would it sleep on my sons bed alright do you think, as he's determined that's what going to happen with our new dog?

Miss Robyn said...

when I am planning on going away for any length of time.. I cannot wait to leave.. then when I get there, I can't wait to go home..

Fire Byrd said...

oooh miss *r lets hope you don't feel that next year, cause it's a bit far to turn round and go home!!