Lately being with people feels more painful than being alone.
Everyday familial scenes, a child saying the word dad or appa, sting.
And something else strange, I realize yesterday: it has been a while since I experienced friendship- a get-together with a friend, a chat, outing, even a play date, without feeling that I was on the receiving end of someone's "ministry" to us. This feels isolating and sad. I'm not sure if I bring anything to the table anymore. I feel like I exist in the minds and hearts of most people only as a tragic figure, and a prick to their conscious. I feel that when they make plans with me they feel relieved and their conscious can rest for a while. They are trying not to be the ones who disappear back to their own life even though we each must live our own life and this is mine and that is a simple truth.
So, I am scheduled in, and I go. "Thanks," "Thanks," I'm always saying. It is humbling in a way I'd never known before this. Then, even if I tell myself beforehand that I will just ask them about their life and listen, there I go still talking about "it." I feel bad that I can't give them any news of some great progress or change. Even I am tired of talking about all this.
But the worst part is that the whole time they are with me, they nonchalantly receive text messages, calls, and check their phone to see the time, because there is someone who loves them- someone who is the life they will get back to when they are done here. And that is OK and that is as it should be. I had that once too. I simply ache for it. For the person who isn't taking a moment out of their life to listen to me, but the person who shares this life with me. For the person who I am eager to get back to after my own outing with a friend. Who after we share a meal, will wash the dishes and bring me a glass of water in our bedroom while we talk about our day with those "other people." For the person who calls me and I answer, "Hey...we're just leaving now. I'll be home in about five minutes." Home.