Part of my loneliness comes from the fact that I live partly in several different worlds.
One is the world of parent, now parent of a teen. Add to that “single parent without extended family” and things get already lonely and dicey, for when I say “no extended family” I mean just that: no one.
Another world is the one of an older person. I’m 57 and start feeling it. My son, whom I had when I was 43, keeps me young in some ways, but also sucks up big chunks of my energy.
In these two worlds, when I try to befriend other parents, they are often 20+ years younger than I and we don’t relate. If, on the other hand, I try to befriend people my age, they are generally grandparents and have difficulty tolerating the constant presence of a child, or a 24/7 child-related life.
On top of these two reasons of not finding many true friends, I’m a foreigner in this country. In fact, I’ve always been a foreigner. I grew up a foreigner in Switzerland and once I had the Swiss citizenship, I moved on and have been living in three different countries since. I suppose the label “foreigner” sticks to my heart. And it is not always easy to carry.
More oddities: English is not even my mother tongue. I’m blogging here since years and one or the other of my readers might have noticed that – every so often – my sentences or choice of words are odd and seem a little off. English is my third language, after German and French.
Lastly, I’m a traveler, in my mind and in my soul.
I’m living now in the same locality since eight years which is almost a record. I stay here for the benefit of my child, so that he can grow roots and cultivate friendships. If it were left to me alone, I’d hit the road every six months. I love checking out other places and have traveled to 30+ countries so far. Traveling opens your mind to different cultures and takes your thoughts off your own belly button, but when it comes to settling for a few years, it can be a challenge. The souls always yearns to move on…
And here I stand now, telling you all this about myself, feeling strange and lonely, and yet anchored to my son and through him to this place, held here by his need and our love, but always on the ready to go explore new worlds, even if I don’t belong.