If you’re not yet a participant in the Teachers Write group on Facebook, let me encourage you to join this year! It is hosted by some amazing teachers and authors, and it’s basically a free PD of incredibly clever ideas for generating enthusiasm for writing among students. It’s also restorative in a way similar to the Slice of Life challenge.
If I remember correctly, one of the prompts last summer was to choose an abstract noun and define it in a way that brings it to life. I chose to do so through figurative comparisons in a list format. As I’ve contemplated a few relationships this week, namely the ongoing cancellations part of the list, I chose to revise my entry from that day as today’s slice.
Loneliness is a eating cold lunch at the end of an empty table in a crowded cafeteria. It’s listening to a symphony of conversations and laughter while a mental clock ticks quietly and agonizingly slowly through your lunch period.
Loneliness is realizing that the person you trusted really just used you as the topic for new gossip.
Loneliness is realizing as soon as you make plans with someone that you’ll be stood up again at the last minute or possibly cancelled the day before– like every other thing you’ve planned with them for months and years on end.
Loneliness is sitting in an obstetrician’s waiting room while you are in the midst of a miscarriage.
Loneliness is sitting in a hospital room, crying, and the only person who you have to talk to is the stranger who stops to ask whether you’re alright. Deep loneliness is the sound of that person’s footsteps echoing as they leave.
Things are okay. It was a hard time during one of my mom’s surgeries awhile back, which inspired the last half of this. Being a caretaker by yourself is pretty hard sometimes.