Every Man is an Island

Every Man is an Island

Gan just left, and I’m sitting here all alone, a solitary figure sitting beside CBTL’s expansive glass wall. As I’m writing this, I’m constantly glancing into the mall, watching the goings on through the transparent barrier.

A while ago, I saw this peculiar sight. A lone chair was left outside, without its corresponding table or even other chairs. And this solitary figure struck me, because even with the presence of a lot of other chairs and tables, at that point of time, it was left all alone.

So this could actually be a metaphor for life and people. Even with entities all around the chair, laughing, talking, or whatnot, it was still alone, and maybe with all the bustling activity all around it, its solitude showed more, and it stuck out like a sore thumb. How ever hard we may try, at some points of our lives, we will be utterly alone (just like that chair), whether we like it or not. Maybe people just wanted to ignore you, or they made plans and you weren’t available, but whatever the circumstance may be, you will be left by yourself and you won’t be able to do anything about it. People may notice or they won’t, but it would all be the same. You would feel helpless, silent, and lost. Maybe you love this solitude, or maybe you loathe it. What we have to realize, however, is that we need these times to make us sane. To maintain balance and harmony in our lives. To remind us we are humans.

I’ve been reading Gan’s blog posts (I discovered just now that she was quite open about her blog (which came as a surprise to me), and that, in fact, she wanted me to read her posts, something that made me quite uncomfortable). If you knew Gan in real life, reading her blog will take you by surprise. Her words and emotions depicted are so unlike her, and show another side of Gan which was new and unfamiliar to us. I never thought she was capable of such thoughts, or that she thought and felt that way. I was taken aback, and I couldn’t help but feel a little put off.

In real life, she was always bubbly and jolly. She was talkative and prone to bouts of laughter. Her blog was dark and depressing. It was also degrading and demeaning. Judging from her posts, however, I found a similarity of her online self and the person I encounter everyday.

She is afraid of loneliness. She despises solitude, and whenever she senses even the tiniest hint of it, she runs away terrified. She becomes lost and confused, and blames it on everyone.

I found this rather disconcerting because lonelines can’t be helped. It is, and will always remain, a vital part of our lives. So maybe the saying “no man is an island” applies in real life, but a man could also be an island, and he/she won’t go insane. Take away loneliness, and what have you got? Everything is relative, and being surrounded by friends will be unsubstantial unless you have something to compare it with. We could only appreciate good company if we have endured loneliness. You won’t have any emotions for the people in your life if it were not for loneliness.

Loneliness has its perks, too. Sometimes, we just really want to be alone. We need some alone time to reflect about ourselves and do things we can only do if people won’t interrupt us.

The key is acceptance. Once we are no longer afraid of solitude, we would be able to truly appreciate life, both with people and without. I won’t be pretentious and say I’ve already transcended that fact, because truly, we will always go back to that phase. We question the times, the things happening in our lives, and we begin to doubt if what we know is true. But that’s all a part of life, and sometimes we just have to rest and go with the flow.

Okay, think of it this way: like the glass wall that separates me from the people inside the mall, there is also a barrier that separates us from the outer world and other people. Most times we won’t even notice it’s there; we won’t even notice it until a certain moment comes. When that moment arrives, we then see the wall around us, enclosing us, preventing us from communicating effectively to other people, and not allowing them to reach out. Because really, we are not the same, and there would be certain matters that the whole world won’t be able to understand as much as you want. Instead of getting frustrated, we should be thankful that there are some things we can keep to ourselves; things we can call our own. We should learn how to take life as it is. Solitude isn’t that bad. We just have to enjoy every step.

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