Saturday a week ago, a sudden sensation of emptiness came over me. If anything, it was a rational “feeling” rather than anything emotional. Moreover, it felt different than loneliness (an emotional low) or solitude (a “rational” high). Also see my related blogs on solitude & loneliness.
A 2015 Thought Catalog article by Nicole Tarkoff describes it well. To improve overall readability, I’ve added bold markings to its original italic markings.
“Emptiness does not come and go in waves; it is static. You don’t feel emptiness, you know it. You know that something is missing, but you don’t know what, until that vacant space is filled.”
and its excellent closing argument:
“Emptiness is what you feel when you’re missing a connection. Loneliness is what you feel when a connection is lost.”
I’ve made a diagram following the above in order to assist with my thinking. That diagram is quite different than I had assumed it would be, and frankly a pleasant surprise as well.
The benefit of a diagram is that any flaw becomes painfully visible. With the knowledge of hindsight, I’m now starting to doubt if my rollercoaster of solitude and loneliness is even a “thing”. My diagram states that they’re not (genuine) opposites.
“In all our searching, the only thing we’ve found that makes the emptiness bearable is each other.”A quote by Carl Sagan (1934-1996), “an American astronomer, planetary scientist, cosmologist, astrophysicist, astrobiologist, author, and science communicator.”
Running on Empty (1977) by Jackson Browne
artist, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2, Wiki-3
Running on, running on empty
Running on, running blind
Running on, running into the sun
But I’m running behind
Note: all markings (bold, italic, underlining) by LO unless stated otherwise.