Solitude is pleasant. Loneliness is not.
~ Anna Neagle
Solitude, and knowing the difference between solitude and loneliness is the key to enjoying being alone with yourself. However, being comfortable with yourself is the key to feeling good in your own skin. Finding that balance is more difficult for some, but worth the work. Solitude can be therapy and embracing it can eviscerate loneliness.
It is good to know the difference but neither feeling is good or bad. It is how you feel. Of course, the ultimate goal is to feel good about yourself and comfortable in your own skin. You learn to embrace the rolls. You appreciate the scars because they show you have lived life. You see the wrinkles as year markers on the life you lived. The blotches and freckles from younger days of baby oiled skin in the sun are notable mistakes, but you loved the way your skin looked when it was kissed by the sun.
We can’t always go back and change the way we felt about our bodies. We can move forward with a new sense of appreciation for it. It isn’t easy. I don’t mean to suggest that it is. It is one of the hardest things that I struggle with all the time. I try really hard to separate the two. There are times that I can sit alone to be comfortable in my skin. I can curl up on the couch and watch TV and not miss a person, place, or thing, enjoying my solitude. Sometimes that same activity (sort of) can make me feel lonely and lost and wondering if I’ll ever feel better. Is it a balance? Perhaps. That is the hardest part of being at peace with solitude.
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