Solitude Unmasked

I am not alone.

I have to keep telling myself that sometimes, I will admit.  Actually, more often than I would care to confess at present.
There’s a longing for companionship somewhere in each of us, the whole ideological thought of lone wolves aside, at least as far as it pertains to humans.  Maybe you’ll get a rare few who just exist and naturally are content in solitude, but looking at the whole scope of mankind, I’d say there’s enough evidence that we’re all made for companionship in some form.

Marriage is a pretty obvious one.  Man and woman united, until death do they part.  It’s the idealism behind it… or is it?  Is it unrealistic to pledge oneself to one person until end of days?  In this society, the opposite is encouraged, but there’s something greater.  Something lasting.  So you’ll forgive me if I take my ideals over those self-lit pyres.  I still plan to have hope.

Holy Orders and Priesthood are other examples of companionship.  These can never be fully understood by those of us on the outside, who have never taken such vows.  And yes, granted, I’m also not married, but this latter section is more intangible.  A unity that cannot be seen by the eye alone.  It makes it unique in that respect, with each person united to Christ and the Church in some form.  There are differing aspects of course, but still pertaining to man and woman, and thus the model remains.

Friendship.  The one most relevant to me at this point in time.  There’s always that one person or group of people who just know and understand you, and they’ll stand with you, maybe not to end of days, but as far as they’re supposed to in the grand scheme of things.  Don’t take them for granted, and remember that each friendship is supposed to be mutually beneficial, helping both of you grow towards glorious heights.
With that in mind, there is a main difference between marriage and friendship.  The intimacy, obviously, but also, some simple imagery from C.S. Lewis, that I can’t exactly quote, but here goes.
Lovers face one another, wrapped in each other’s gazes, oblivious to the world around them.  Friends stand side by side, shoulder to shoulder, ready to take on the world.
Standing together, yet with a unique set of aspects.

So here I am, not exactly on my own, despite what I think.  I have friends here, but I have those moments of solitude which appear more frequently.  They show me what I’m truly looking for.  It’s not inspiring, by any means.  Good company can be difficult to come by, and yet we must continue onward, not lowering our standards in the face of loneliness.
Fortunately, it hasn’t come to that on my end.
Today my prayer for companionship was answered.  I saw a friend from RSP at school.  It was quite an unexpected blessing, but a fantastic one that I am truly grateful for.  It was another moment of unity that gave me strength, and I couldn’t ask for more.  It fulfilled a great need, and so I continue onward, past those flashes of loneliness and those long hours of solitude.

I remain hopeful, because I know where my weakness lies, and I pray that I can meet it head on.
Hopefully, you too will rise to the challenge, if you struggle with such things.

You are not alone.

-M