Feeling lonely when you’re surrounded by people.

I’m lonely.

There are six other people in this house and I am lonely.

And the more I read that I should be thankful that I have anyone around at all, the more I think that people equate having a family with having a cohesive family unit.

I’m eternally grateful for my family, but I think it’s important to note that just because they’re my family does not mean that we get along. It doesn’t mean that we act, think or feel the same way. It definitely doesn’t mean that we see eye to eye. I reckon a lot of families are the same. Just because you’re related to someone doesn’t mean that being with them 24 hours a day seven days per week is going to be easy.

I was watching Dr. Phil earlier and he said that, in China where quarantine policies have been in place since January, there’s been a spike in divorce applications. This made me feel a little less awful for how I feel. Because I’m not alone in finding it tough to be at home.

I love my family. I help them when they’re sick, I comfort them when they cry, heck… they go to the store for me when I don’t want to share germs. But, truth be told, this is hard. We’re inherently different in about every category except our genetics. When we each have our own lives, our differences strengthen us. It brings outside perspectives, thoughts, laughs. When we’re each stuck inside together for 24 hours a day, seven days a week, things get tough.

On the good days, I spend the majority of the time biting my tongue. On the regular days, our vastly different beliefs are causing spats, arguments or passive aggressive behaviours that really weigh on one’s mood. And, on the bad days, well let’s not go there. The point is, it’s not easy.

Just because you love someone doesn’t mean that you agree with everything they do. Just because you’re related to someone doesn’t mean that being quarantined with them is going to be easy. Conversations don’t just spontaneously pop up and last for six hours to pass the time in a day. Sometimes, even if they’re family, you really have to work at it. And sometimes you really have to work at it to make sure certain conversations don’t happen.

Why aren’t you married yet?

When you are you going to give me grandbabies?

Why must you always provoke me?

Yeah, I’m sure that you know the typea of conversations I’m talking about. I’m all too sure you’ve had conversations of your own, much like these, in the past few weeks.

Bottom line is, if you’re struggling right now, you’re not alone. I see you and I understand you. Don’t hate yourself for how you feel. We’re all scared and we’re all struggling. Even the people who are driving us crazy.

And yes, it is possible that it can be extremely lonely being in a house filled with six other people. Even if it’s only one other person in your house… sometimes being close together for long periods of time, for events such as home quarantine, well it makes people feel farther apart than ever before. You don’t have to be alone to be lonely. But, if you are alone and lonely, I see you too.

Einstein knows his stuff.

Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.

-Albert Einstein

Hopefully this quote goes without needing explanation. Just know that if you’re out there and you’re having a hard time, a hard day or a hard life, you are your own genius and you’re not alone.