“But Alone Is Exactly How I Should Be”

If there’s one thing I excel at is isolating myself from the rest of the world. It’s not a skill I’m proud of, either; I’m just really good at blowing off people and plans with half-assed excuses because I would much rather spend my time wallowing in self-pity and denial of my feelings than go out and make new memories. I’m like really good at it.

This past summer kind of proves that, too. I didn’t have a lot of plans with people nor did I bother to make any plans either. I left my old job under some very weird and complicated circumstances, but I spent the first few weeks of my newfound unemployment watching movies and binging on TV shows that I hadn’t seen in ages. Truthfully, it was nice having no responsibilities and just letting go of the usual summer stress… until I started to get bored.

Boredom and me don’t get along. I need something to keep my interest and distract me from life, otherwise I start to invert and end up spinning my hamster wheel until I collapse from dehydration, or I start fantasizing about every possible outcome from future and past arguments and conversations and end up getting more depressed than before. It’s an endless cycle of me staring into the void, lost in my headphones, losing control of my thought-process as it wanders into every crevasse and canyon. It’s not healthy.

So, I made an appointment with my primary doctor. As I’ve mentioned before with my random bouts of lower back pain, I’ve been putting off this visit for some time, but I was able to see him for a diagnosis. During that appointment I was sent for blood work, a GI workup, and referred to a psychiatrist for the prelim diagnosis of depression.

After starting a low-dose anti-depressant, getting blood work done, meeting with a GI doctor and psychiatrist, my life was starting to get slightly better: I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease along with moderate depression and anxiety. I know that sounds contradictory, but at least now I had some reasons behind my mental and physical aliments. I now had a plan to help with my Celiac Disease and my anti-depressant was starting to work. It was actually pretty great to feel like I was making a difference in my life… until I realized that I was still alone.

I had spent so much time trying to solve my problems on my own that I became a hermit whose only close friends live Pittsburgh and Boston, hours away from casually getting together for a show or a drink. The more I reflected on it, the more I realize that I’ve felt alone for almost entire life. Not in a parental neglectful way or anything, but more like in a niche way. When I would start hanging out with people, either they would get bored of me or I would get bored of them and then we would start slowing losing contact with each other until we would sporadically and casually hang out. Yet I’m weirdly okay with that.

I think being alone (albeit a terrible feeling) has been for the best. Being alone has allowed me to explore my interests without judgment and let me do whatever I wanted without feeling guilty for leaving other people out. There’s no pressure from other people to do what they’re doing. Granted, it does make sharing my experiences with other a bit more difficult, but I still get the results I want.

Do I occasionally want what others have? Of course, but I’m not killing myself to edge out others to achieve it.

I know one day I won’t be alone and I’ll find my niche, but for now I’m alone and that’s exactly how it should be.


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About ryantpoole

Ryan T Poole is a former broadcast public relations specialist and morning show producer. His time is spent updating this blog, watching and analyzing TV and movies, reading, listening to music, taking care of his pets, and refocusing his energy into more productive outlets. He likes cold coffee, hot tea, long conversations, and obscure references.

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