We are well into Janauary and this is my first blog. I think I’m hiding from the world. In my bathtub. I have been avoiding the process of sitting down to write out of fear of sounding like a whiny baby. But whatever. I have been in a weird space since 2019 started. I know I won’t stay stuck in it, but I have also learned to honor my now and allow myself to be where I am. I’ll tell you where I am. Lonely. I am in a perpetual state of loneliness. Not sad. Not depressed. Just lonely. I’m surrounded by a tribe of amazing people in all of my communities from home and outward into the real world as well as the virtual world. It would seem lonely isn’t something I “should” ever feel. See those quotations around “should?” That’s because I do know should is a bullshit word and my feelings are valid. So there’s that. It seems the more connected I am, the more alone I feel. My brain knows that I am NOT alone. My heart is learning that not all of my relationships are real. I am a sensitive soul and lately my feelings are getting hurt left and right. I’m not exactly sure what that’s about, but I suspect it has a lot to do with actually paying attention to my feelings. That’s therapy working. As of late it’s becoming clear to me that some people want to be around me because they think I can do something for them. Add to their status or popularity. And it hurts my feelings. That seems childish as I read it, but I’m also someone who is learning to tune in and pay attention to my inner child. Again, valid. It’s not such a big deal when it comes from someone I don’t know that well, but when it comes from someone I love, it sucks. What hurts worse is when someone who IS my friend and I know loves me blindsides me with a passive aggressive comment about my happy life. I imagine that happens to everyone? Jealousy? Envy? Those words are hard to say and sound harsh, but I can’t find any other words that seem right. Yesterday I saw my favorite Woo Woo Witch Healer and she informed me that it hurts because it’s opening an old wound that hasn’t fully healed. The wound of being used? Or jealous people? I’ll have to dive into my journal on that one, but I have no doubt she’s right. I learned from trauma informed yoga training that “if it’s hysterical, it’s historical.” If something is triggering us today, it is coming from our past. It seems I will never run out of “work” to do on myself. Soul Detective work. I have put a lot of energy into building a loving and supportive community for myself. In the early days I called this Team Shannon. I still have my team. I have come full circle in that area and now I get to be on other people’s teams. Cheering them on and supporting them. I find that to be meaningful “work.” I love to see others succeed. Seems everyone doesn’t feel that same way. Lately the word “discernment” has been appearing in my life on repeat. This is the lesson I am getting hit with hard this January. Learning how to discern my circle. I have never been that person who needs everyone to like me. In fact, I have been the opposite. Quite content to push people away. That’s the exact reason I don’t have many friends from my childhood or even my life pre-sobriety. I never learned how to build healthy relationships. Sobriety has given me that gift. Sobriety and a spiritual path. I don’t need everyone’s love and friendship. I am not for everyone and everyone is not for me. I’m just trying to figure out who gets to sit at my table. I also know that when I am feeling lonely, it’s the time I most need to be alone. The Divine is present within me and I am NEVER alone. And there it is. There’s my aha moment right there. THAT is the connection I am seeking. Funny how putting my thoughts down in a blog can bring me clarity that a journal can’t always bring me to. Beautiful. And now I’ll just be over here, practicing discernment, connecting with a power greater than myself and finding my way.