ALONE OR LONELY? OR BOTH?

Recently, I watched an old episode of Ali McBeal, a popular TV show from the 90s. She contemplated the end of a romantic relationship and said, “When I think back about my loneliest moments, there was someone next to me.” In the next episode, she had a conversation with her ex-boyfriend. He told her she was afraid of being alone. She rejected that idea, saying her fear was of being with the wrong person. Hence, the reason she broke up with him. Yes, it is possible to be with someone and still feel alone. In my younger days, I experienced it. Maybe you have too.

What is the difference between lonely and alone? Although they are both adjectives, they have far different meanings.

Lonely is a feeling of sadness, maybe abandonment. Sometimes it is the cruelest part of mourning the loss of a loved one either through death or a breakup.

Alone is isolation or solitude, deprived of the company of others. To be honest, I enjoy quiet moments of solitude. It gives me the opportunity to write without interruption. Still, I wouldn’t want to be alone all the time. That would definitely lead to loneliness.

Because the pandemic is raging across the world, many are experiencing aloneness and loneliness simultaneously. Thousands have experienced the death of a friend or family member, leaving a void, an empty place at the table. Thousands more avoid any contact with anyone outside their immediate family for fear of contracting the virus. For those who live by themselves, it sadly means no interaction with anyone.

How can we best adjust to aloneness which may lead to loneliness? I try to keep busy and stay engaged with others through phone calls and social media. What do you do? I would love to know your thoughts. Leave a reply.

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A Moment in Time

Have you ever thought about how things can change in an instant, and not for the good? Floods, snowstorms, hurricanes, wildfire, a terrorist attack, a pandemic. Yes, in an instant, lives change with the loss of a loved one, a job, a home.

Two characters in my novel, Rock Bottom, experience loss in different ways. They are sisters, Isabella Luca and Brianna Connelly. Into adulthood, they stay close and can’t imagine life without the other. But it happens with the discovery of Brianna’s body from what appears to be suicide.

Before Brianna’s death, she faces the tragedy of losing someone herself. An automobile accident takes the life of her young husband and leaves her with a permanent injury. Her physical and emotional pain become too great for her to bear. She soon relies on opioids as a coping device. Once addicted, she gives up her dream of becoming a dancer.

Through it all, Isabella continues with her own aspirations to make it big as an opera singer in New York. She has just finished her performance as the lead in Tosca when she receives the tragic news of her sister’s death.

She doesn’t believe her sister took her own life. With determination and grit, she puts her opera career on hold to come home and find out the truth. She recruits the one person she believes can help her, Detective Colt Jessup, who has arrested her sister on several occasions. But she also knows he played a significant role in her recovery.

As different as night and day, Detective Colt Jessup and Isabella Luca join forces in search of answers. Isabella risks suffering the same fate as her sister if she gets too close to the truth. It’s up to Colt to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Come along for the ride. Free December 23 and 24 on Amazon Kindle.

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10 MEMORABLE LINES FROM CHRISTMAS MOVIES

  1. “I never thought it was such a bad little tree. It’s not bad at all really. Maybe it just needs a little love.”—Linus in “A Charlie Brown Christmas”
  2. “Oh, Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind and that’s what’s been changing. That’s why I’m glad I’m here, maybe I can do something about it.” Kris Kringle in Miracle on 34th Street
  3. “You’ll shoot your eye out, kid.” —Santa Claus in A Christmas Story
  4. “What if Christmas, he thought, didn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, was a little bit more.” — Narrator from Dr. Suess’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas
  5. “Every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings.” Zuzu Bailey in It’s a Wonderful Life
  6. “Business? Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence were all my business.” The ghost of Marley in A Christmas Carol
  7. “Can you please tell Santa that instead of presents this year, I just want my family back.” —Kevin in Home Alone
  8. “I passed through the seven levels of the candy cane forest, through the sea of swirly-twirly gum drops, and then I walked through the Lincoln Tunnel.” —Buddy in Elf
  9. “I know we could both go on with our separate lives and we’d be just fine, but I’ve seen what we can be together, and I choose us.” – Jack Campbell in Family Man
  10. “Sometimes, the most real things in the world are the things we can’t see.” – The Conductor in The Polar Express

What are some of your favorite quotes? Feel free to tell us by responding in “Comments” below.

Happy holidays to all of you!

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George Bailey’s Risks

“Christmas Tree” by bplanet

What I like most about George Bailey in “It’s a Wonderful Life” is his willingness to take risk to help someone. He did it repeatedly. When his brother fell through the ice in the pond, he didn’t hesitate to jump in and save him. Another time as a boy and at the risk of losing his job, he stopped the pharmacist from making a fatal mistake with a prescription.

Once again, as a grown man in love with a beautiful woman, he gave up his honeymoon plans to protect the savings of the bank and loan’s customers when there was a run on the bank. He had to know he jeopardized his relationship with his new bride. Most women at that point would have had second thoughts, but not his sweet Mary.

Would you do it? Would you risk everything—anything—to help someone? Amid the pandemic, we see it every day with front-line workers, especially doctors and nurses. Heroes among us. Many will not be with the families for the holidays. Instead, they will work trying to save lives. Something to think about when we grumble about having to wear a mask.

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