The word ‘so’ is holding me hostage. How is it that two little letters have the power to paralyze a grown woman? I don’t know, but they do, or at least they did, until I changed its location in my awful repetitive sentence that was ruling me.
As a newly retired almost empty nester with few friends, my life as I had known it for the past 25 years was looking drastically different. And I was lonely.
Day in and day out, over and over all I could hear was myself repeating the same statement. “I am SO lonely”, I would cry to myself. “I am sooo lonely”. The life I had created while working and raising my children was vastly changing. And so was I.
I reminded myself of that every single day since my phone stopped ringing. There were no longer playdates to schedule, no soccer practice to scurry off to, no PTA messages, and no more office meetings to complain about.
Truth is, I felt alone. And blue.
Then one day, when I couldn’t take the loneliness any longer, I changed my sentence. I moved that dreadful adverb to the front of my thoughts and it became, “So, I’m lonely.”
“So, I’m lonely”, translated for me into, “So what? You’re lonely? Do something about it woman!”.
That new structure gave me new hope. I no longer felt desperate. I no longer felt anxious. Changing the position of that one word, empowered me to do something about it. I was no longer a helpless victim of loneliness. I was now feeling lonely and I intuitively knew there was something I could do about it.
And I did.
I now make lunch dates instead of playdates. When the silence of my life seems too much, I take to my computer to write. I begin a new job search. I take a continuing ed class and I even applied to graduate school.
So I’m lonely. Big deal. It’s not a death sentence.
There are so many things I can do with my newfound freedom and wallowing in the helplessness of whining “I’m so lonely”, is no longer one of them.