Alone. Always alone.

I’ve been alone for 4 1/2 years since my divorce but I don’t think I’ve felt as alone as I have the past few weeks. It’s loneliness, I know, but it seems like it’s more.

I spend my time off work home alone. I go to the store or maybe somewhere to eat but no one really wants to talk to me. Today I got something to eat. I went to the store for things like cat litter and milk and deodorant. I picked up a card off the angel tree so I have to get stuff for a 9yo girl within a week. I did laundry.

No “friends” want to talk to me. I will message one occasionally when I’m feeling especially lonely but I don’t hear back. It’s ok though. I haven’t really done anything to expect anyone to respond.

I felt sick yesterday. Just a quick stomach bug or something. But it made me think a little bit about my station in life. Who would I call if something were to happen? Would anyone even care? It saddens me knowing no one wants to spend time with me now, but it’s even worse to think I’m going to die alone.

All this alone time sets my mind in motion. Wondering, thinking, wishing, fantasizing. But mostly realizing. Realizing I’m just plodding along, taking up space, offering nothing to anyone and receiving just as much in return. Exactly what I deserve.

I have the upcoming holidays to look forward to alone. That’s becoming an annual tradition. Good thing I don’t really care about Christmas.

Will I ever not feel this way again? It doesn’t look that way. I’m trying to figure out how to make alone worth living but I don’t have an answer. This is not how I want to live. Heartache hurts.

Specific (probably fake) reasons

I’ve been reading a blog by a young lady named Vee, #MILLENNIALLIFECRISIS. I’m not sure when or how I came across her but her posts are often informative or entertaining or both. A post this week about anxiety led to a back-and-forth about it between us, specifically this entry:

“Anxiety is not believing you’re good enough for them, to be around them or to be loved by them. It really doesn’t matter if you actually are, you’ll never feel good enough.”

I told her I don’t really have anxiety but I do identify as being depressed brought on by loneliness and isolation, and I definitely relate to those words. She said her therapist said an anxious person would have no concrete answer as to why they don’t feel good enough. They just believe it true. A depressed person will have answers, even if they’re wrong, but will believe them anyway. That’s a summary of it.

I have definite answers and they all swirl around in my mind. Let’s take my fruitless four-year search for a date. Here are things I logically believe about myself: I’m a genuinely good guy, kind-hearted, decent looking, relatively intelligent, empathetic. All of those things people who know me outside the void would agree are true. But when I am rejected, as has happened so many times in this quest to escape loneliness, my mind assigns reasons why even if there is no reason. “I’m just some fat old man no woman would ever be attracted to. I wouldn’t be able to afford to provide her with things she deserves. My schedule would never allow us to spend any time together anyway. Anyone could do so much better than to be stuck with me. I had my chance with someone and don’t deserve another chance. Don’t steal someone’s dreams by holding her back.” And on and on and on it goes. Depression just keeps regurgitating these things and more and spitting them back at me, robbing me of my self-esteem and sense of worth.

It’s hard to overcome. I really work hard outside the void to try to stay upbeat and positive. It’s hard. It wears me out actually. Which is why I have to let it out to any of you in the Anonymous Void who choose to subject yourself to my self-loathing rants. Sorry you are the (sometimes) unsuspecting catchers of these volleys.

My mind must really be working overtime to gift you with so many entries this week. No wonder I feel so exhausted right now.

Carrying loneliness

Excuse me while I cry a little. It’s not directed at anyone, except maybe me. But I have nowhere else to do so. Continue at your own risk.

It’s not been the best week emotionally. I’m finishing a three-day weekend, one filled with a lot of time alone. Like three days of it. I went to the movies one day. The rest of my time was spent home alone. Except when I’d go to the store or maybe to get something to eat. I did those things in the sad hope I may have someone to interact with, if even for just a moment, while placing an order or going through the checkout. That’s what I have to look forward to, telling the order-taker what I want on my burger and counting that as conversation. But no one else is interested in doing so. I know. I tried. But everyone is busy and doesn’t have time to deal with the needy old man. It’s somewhat comforting in a weird way to know when my time here is done I won’t be missed. I’m not missed now and I’m right here.

I’ve been thinking about it a lot though. Do I deserve anyone’s time and attention? Why? What have I done? Have I given anyone a reason? Have I done anything for anyone? Not really. I have a lot of selfishness, maybe even a sense of entitlement.

All of these thoughts and more run through the lonely mind when it’s left alone so much. I see couples dining, enjoying their shared company, and it makes me sad to know no one enjoys my company.

I’m tired. Despite this time off doing nothing I still feel exhausted. Loneliness is so tiring. It’s a heavy load. I’m tired of carrying it. But it will be my load to carry the rest of my life, it seems. Maybe one day I’ll get used to it and be strong enough to handle it. Or maybe it will just crush me into oblivion. Will anyone even notice? Will they care?

It’s late. Time to sleep. Then I’ll start over with these thoughts again tomorrow, just another lonely day.

The loneliest time

So it’s the start of the holidays. Thanksgiving is Thursday, Christmas and New Year’s a month away. Just more days to be alone.

I’m on a three-day weekend. Today is just a random vacation day. I went to the movies and the store. I decided to tackle the living room for cleaning. I pulled out a lot of the furniture, swept, wet Swiffered. Waiting on that to dry now so I can do the other half of the room. What a vacation blast! But what else would I do? I have no one to do anything with. I’d be alone no matter what I’m doing. So it’s just hanging out at home. Maybe more cleaning over the next couple days.

I go back to work on Thanksgiving day, not that the day will hold anything special for me anyway. My sister invited me to join them but the idea of driving about 2 1/2 hours round trip for about 30 minutes of food and visitation time doesn’t sound too good. So I’ll manage something before going to work. I don’t figure I’ll hear from anyone that day either. It’s not like anyone is thinking of me any other day. I deserve this status though.

For many years I had time with people at the holidays. I know now I was too depressed most of the time to appreciate it. I shut people out because of it. I’m still not a big holidays person, but being alone, being ignored, being depressed because of it all is not the way to spend that time. Come Christmas it will be the same, or maybe worse. New Year’s kiss? Strictly a fantasy. But again I wasn’t a very good participant over the years so I have no right to feel I deserve anything more now.

I don’t expect anyone to do anything. This is my problem. I just don’t know how to fix it, if it even can be or deserves to be. I just need to let it out. I certainly don’t expect anything of the 4-6 of you in the Anonymous Void who may look at this and think, “Oh boy, not again.” It’s not your problem or doing. But you’re the only ones who know. It’s not my place to tell people out here to spend time or be my friend. I’ll just continue to try being kind and helpful to others. Because as much as you see me cry here, that’s what I try to do outside this space. I wish someone out there saw me as being worthy of spending time with though. It’s hard knowing you’re not important or wanted by another person. It’s just piling on the loneliness and self doubts. And, yes, my own self-pity.

Talking dirt(y)

My house is filthy. I knew it was dirty, cluttered, in need of cleaning more than just sweeping here and there, doing dishes, laundry, etc. But until last week, when a quick laser to my eyes cleared off the new growth of cataracts, I didn’t realize how bad things had gotten. Everything is bright and clear, including the dirt. So I’ve gotten started on it since I don’t have anywhere else to be.

Today I tackled the bathroom. I’d spent time on the tub and shower over the weekend but today it was cleaning it again, plus the sink and counter, and some storage spots in there, and the toilet and mopping the floor. It was an hourslong process with a dinner break thrown in. I’ve mopped twice and will do it once more after this last one dries so I’m not completely done yet. And truth be told, I could probably do it all again tomorrow to get things I missed today. It may never end. And there’s still the rest of the house to go. I’ll start on some other rooms maybe later this week.

While I was working on today’s project I decided to check out a new podcast. My friend, acquaintance really, and her best friend/roommate started their own. It includes dirty talk — and not the broom and dustpan cleanup type. I’m not offended by such discussions, and really found them informative and entertaining in a no-filter look at sex through the eyes of 22yo women. I’m sure I probably learned some things, but it also wiped the dirt out of my eyes and gave me a clearer look at things I probably already knew. One of those is that my sexual life ended about 4 1/2 years ago, most likely never to be active with another person again. Why should I ever expect that to happen if I can’t even interest a woman in a date without the pressure of sex? Maybe if I pay someone, which I’d never do.

Do I miss it? Of course. But it’s not just about the intercourse. When I think about someone that way, I think a lot about just holding, caressing and cuddling someone. I miss touch, loving touch. My ex-wife is the last woman I kissed. I’ve not even been close to doing that since. I miss that. Holding hands on a walk. Smart conversation. None of that is in my life now, and doesn’t appear to be an option in the future. Women in my age group appear to be fed up with sex being the only thing men want, so they hold it against all men it appears. Younger women have no interest in some old man — as the podcasters talked about in their discussion — and I certainly don’t blame them for that. Or maybe both groups just find me revolting. That’s also possible.

So like everything else in my life now it’s just an unfulfilled fantasy. And I don’t even have anyone in particular to be that fantasy, which really is a good thing I guess. Then I’m not obsessing over what I’ll never have. It’s not like I’m the only person in this boat. Lots of people — men and women — are unable to find that person to give them the things they crave. We want validation of our humanity. But maybe I have everything I deserve now.

They promised their next topic is going to be dating apps. I know all about them, at least from my experience as a middle-aged man. It’s mostly just a tease. Women really do have the advantage on them. But that’s OK. I’ve accepted it. I’m aware I don’t fit the parameters of the great catch, whether it’s looks, prestige, sex appeal. I also know what they are missing out on. Sadly, that also leaves me missing out too.

While I cry about being alone and lonely I don’t talk about missing out on the sex aspects. I was missing that long before my one long relationship and really figured that’s the way life was going to be for me. The same way with being alone. That was just a given, and had been going back to high school. I wasn’t on anyone’s radar back then even. I’m unlikely to harp on that missing aspect because then I look like all the other asses who think they are owed that, and I don’t feel that way. It’s got to be a two-way street and no one chooses to travel on my street.

Time for me to stop. I’m just rambling about nothing anyone cares about now.

Exposing my weakness

I’ve been drowning in loneliness lately. There is no lifeline. How do you ask for help when the ones you’ve asked are too busy with their own lives to do anything? Besides, I’m not their person to have to worry about. It’s how it is so often these days. So I am trying to manage on my own. I think I’m doing OK considering.

But I don’t know what to do anymore. I rarely leave the house for anything except work. What’s the point? I’m just as alone and lonely out in the wilds as I am in my house. I don’t think I’ve bothered to turn the TV on in several days. I listen to some music occasionally but I also just sit around in silence, listening to only my mind telling me this is as good as it will ever be.

I was just realizing a couple days ago I’m closing in on my third straight calendar year without even a date. I never thought I would get to this point but here I am. And I’m at a point emotionally where I can’t see it ever changing. And maybe it can’t as I sink into deeper despair even as I try to be positive around people out here away from the void. I think about what it would be like to have someone in my life again, but then I question what I have to offer that would make someone want to be with me. Money? Looks? Security? Love? Hardly. I don’t even have a true friend. No one thinks about me enough to see if I’d like to do something, grab a meal or even just talk about what’s going on in my life. I was feeling pretty down last week. I did message two acquaintances — that’s all I have — hoping to maybe be able to talk. No dice. Just a ‘How are you? Great to hear from you. We should catch up sometime.’ Now would be great, but don’t let me interrupt. I don’t fit into others’ schedule.

I have only the Anonymous Void to tell of my crushing loneliness, how much I miss companionship, conversation, touch, sharing hopes and dreams, fears, vulnerabilities, love; someone who would love me and want my companionship as much. It’s just a fantasy though. Unfortunately this is reality. This is my life. Pardon my weakness; I feel a lonely breakdown cry coming.

It’s coming early

I think I’ve written before I’m not a big holidays person. That’s the time from around thanksgiving to the new year. I just find it to be so depressing, probably because they are just times people try to make them seem so joyous and festive but they are really just another day to be alone. For some reason I feel that depression hitting a little earlier now. I guess I’ve been thinking about it a bit more and earlier.

I always have to work on thanksgiving so I have that to look forward to. Being alone until having to go to work. But is it really any different than any other day? Not really.

I’ve been back to the Watering Hole a little in recent weeks after staying away for quite awhile. One of the girls recently was discussing how she feels like new boyfriend doesn’t take their relationship seriously. Youth. She told him she was going to be off on a recent Saturday night so they could do something. When she called to confirm that day she found out he decided to go o some party out of town. And that night she saw a social media picture of him with another girl. I tried my best to cheer her up but what could I really say? “My heart hurts,” she said. That I can relate to. But I couldn’t really talk about my hurting heart. I never can. There’s no one to listen, except maybe the Anonymous Void. But it doesn’t talk back. Except maybe to tell me to quit crying or the like. Fair enough. So I just hurt alone in silence.

Someone else was fretting over a financial situation she found herself in through no fault of hers, other than choosing the wrong person to be with. But he did something she had to extricate herself from at a major expense. I didn’t really like this girl for a long time. She seemed snooty. But I’ve since figured out it’s just a protective act. I’ve seen some really good qualities come out of hiding. So after a really long back and forth in my head, I left her a significant bit one night. Maybe not enough to take care of her problem but it was a good bit of it. I don’t do things like that to get anything in return. That’s a good thing because I’m often lucky to get a thank you in return. But if someone is having trouble that I can help, why shouldn’t I? I have before and I probably will again. But then I’m reminded if I were to ever be in the same predicament I doubt I could expect help. I’m on my own.

Kind of like I’m always on my own. As you can tell tonight is maybe not a really good one for me. I messaged someone hoping to talk but no dice. Why do I bother? I’m just an unimportant invisible old man to most. Who would even notice if I weren’t around anymore? Work would, since we’re short-handed and can’t afford to lose anyone. But it would be my productivity that would be missed. No one not affected by that productivity will even realize my absence. It’s OK though. Maybe if I were a better person to others …

Living the life I deserve.