As described in many dictionaries, 'Loneliness' is the feeling of sadness because one has no friends, company, or companions.The fact of being without companions, a state of solitariness and the quality of being unfrequented and remote or isolated
“We must delight in each other, make others' conditions our own, rejoice together, mourn together, labour and suffer together, always having before our eyes our commission and community in the work, our community as members of the same body.” ― John Winthrop
As a child, the word loneliness was never in my dictionary. I come from a very big family and as the daughter of church founders, with both parents being like Pastors, it never occured to me that anyone can ever be lonely or isolated. At any given time, we would have both extended family and church members living with us, and our home was always like a party house. Lots of people to talk to. Lots of things to do to keep us occupied. Big compound to run around and the ability to be creative with my thoughts. Looking back now, I would say, it was magical and something I will never forget.
Around the age of 5/6, my half-sister and I decided to go and live with our auntie (our dad's younger sister). My experiences there robbed me of my initial happy girl that I knew myself to be. Our auntie's strict way of life and the malicious way she treated us caused me to lose trust in others, and at some point, I hated my parents for allowing us to go and live there. Everyday, I witnessed my aunt treating her children like princes and princesses, whilst treating my sister and I as slaves. It was one era of my life that led me to make a firm and conscious decision, to protect my children and to give them the best of everything I have.
A few years later, we went to visit our parents for Christmas and I told my mother that I will not be going back. My father was never in support of this and it was a tough time, and not long after, my sister returned from England and I was told to go and live with her. Living with my sister was another experience; her husband was very kind to me and at first it was not bad at all. Then my sister became a mother. Without going into details, Iooking back now, I can say that was the very first time I can say that I felt depressed and lonely.
As someone of African descent, we have some cultural values that to me, I still struggle to come to terms with, and that is, a child's inability to speak up and be listened to. I had no one to turn to express my sadness. There was no Facebook that I could have used to share my stories, it was a tough journey, considering the fact that my parents are financially stable but I was still living like a child of a slave - all in the name of culture. Although my beliefs in relation to my father's attitude to life then was for me to learn and not to get carried away as a child of someone who's got everything.
Fast forward....... I knew there was something very different about me from a very young age. In every childhood play, I always played the role of a mother, or a teacher or a cook. Any role that will put me in a responsible position, and I enjoyed every moment of it. I have always known that I don't act like any of my brothers and sisters. I am very outspoken. Not shy. Open minded, giving and charismatic. I would get my hands dirty and never waited for anyone to make me great. At the same time, looking back, coupled with what I know now, I can say that I felt lonely and no one seemed to truly care about my well-being. With this in mind, I made it a rule to be there for my children, to provide them with all the love and to support them.
There was something that kept me going mentally, and that was the fact that my mother secretly began to use contraceptives, hoping to avoid having any more kids immediately after the birth of my immediate brother. This gave me the reason to keep on living, as I so much believed that my life on earth is for a reason. And that reason is honestly unfolding everyday.
“The more people that meet each other, the better it is for all of them. ("The Gift Of God").” ― Fletcher Pratt, Tales From Gavagan's Bar
What is the reason for my epistle? It is to let you know that I have a journey like yourself. I have been raped, sexually abused and neglected, and most importantly, I have felt lonely at some point in my life, as well as the feelings of depression. I have had the lot. I am not here to plead to you to snap out of it, I am not here to tell you stop living in the past, neither am I here to tell you that the future is going to be always bright. However, I am here to tell you that, what you do with yourself on a daily basis, is what will become your reality, and NEVER blame anyone for it.
Types of triggers that causes the feeling of Loneliness
- Lack of money
- Loss of job
- Loss of family or/and a loved one
- Loss of a partner or a companion
- Not having a sense of belonging
- Loss of good health
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Feelings of neglect