Enveloped by Darkness

Enveloped by darkness day after day

Surrounded by friends ready to play

Alone in a crowd cheerful and smiling

Drowning inside dying and crying

Isolated as usual with limited choices

Invisible among them, but no one notices

Critical sometimes they are of my ways

Silent or furious are my moods without delays

Hearing their voices but not listening to their words

Because often they slay me like sharpened swords

Not great company I am I know

But where else am I supposed to go

Trapped inside myself away from reality

Despising its expectations and meaningless futility

Away when among them, away when alone

Haunted by demons that were birthed at home

Female Solo Travel – The Ups and the Downs

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In the fast-paced bustling 21st century world, women have grown to be more independent. That being the case, it is still seen as unusual for a woman to travel on her own. Whether that woman is originates from a Western or an Eastern culture, liberal or conservative, the question of “why are you travelling alone?” still arises. Friends and family worry about safety, while strangers might pity the lonesome traveller. However there are many advantages to travelling alone that are easily overlooked.

Why Travel Alone

Venturing off on your own and exploring the world is a liberating experience. You don’t have to stress over putting a group together, who would be able to go to the same place at the same time on the same budget, you don’t need to worry about compromising to accommodate someone else’s schedule, and you can change your plans on a whim, without concern for anyone else.  While you might feel cut off by leaving their homes and loved-ones behind, the truth is you are never truly cut-off. When travelling alone you are able to embark on a journey of self-discovery, as well as meet new people at every stop. You can always find someone somewhere who is similar to you in some way.

Concerns

Fear of feeling alone and bored can make you reconsider solo travel. “What am I going to do with my day?” is a common question among new solo travellers. The answer is: plenty. Being in a foreign country, where you are trying to absorb as much of the culture as possible in a limited amount of time, gives you plenty to do. There will always be a show to attend, a museum to explore or an underwater cave to discover, activities and amusements are abundant when visiting a new location. And if you run out of activities during your trip, you can seek companionship in a book or chronicle your adventures in a journal/blog.

Another major concern that faces, particularly women, is safety. Between pickpocketing and harassment, women are considered an easy target, especially when they are walking alone in an unfamiliar area. To avoid a gruesome fate, make sure you keep yourself and your belongings as safe as possible. This can be done by hiding your money inside your clothes instead of in your wallet. Don’t carry large sums of money when sightseeing or shopping, credit cards are preferable. Try to appear like you belong, so as not to attract any unwanted attention to yourself. Walking with a map and turning left and right, labels you as a tourist that can be taken advantage of. Avoid walking alone at night. Finally follow your instinct, if you feel that you shouldn’t be in a particular place then you probably shouldn’t be there. Safe travel is generally about common sense. So as a woman, don’t let your concerns and other’s discourage you from exploring the world alone at your liberty and your own pace.

The Foreign Island

In response to The Daily Post’s prompt “Mad Libs”

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Out of place in a home that is my own

Out of touch in a world where I should belong

Out of breath from running after a mirage

Out in a little island, foreign to all but me

Minuscule yet has an abundance of joy

Petite yet visible in an ocean of sorrow

Tiny yet full of will and courage

Small yet dripping with unharnessed potential

 Its little heart beats loudly

Its blood runs deep

It aches from constant cruelty

 But its soul it is destined to keep

A foreign island all alone

A little island standing tall

An unnoticeable island  to those who can’t know

A peaceful island with dangerous waters below

Miniature Writing Challenge #31

Quotes on Depression

“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“There is no point treating a depressed person as though she were just feeling sad, saying, ‘There now, hang on, you’ll get over it.’ Sadness is more or less like a head cold- with patience, it passes. Depression is like cancer.” – Barbra Kingsolver (The Bean Trees)

“When you’re surrounded by all these people, it can be lonelier than when you’re by yourself. You can be in a huge crowd, but if you don’t feel like you can trust anyone or talk to anybody, you feel like you’re really alone.” – Fiona Apple

“Mental pain is less dramatic than physical pain, but it is more common and also more hard to bear. The frequent attempt to conceal mental pain increases the burden: it is easier to say “My tooth is aching” than to say “My heart is broken.” – C.S. Lewis

“I don’t want any more of this try, try again stuff. I just want out. I’ve had it. I am so tired. I am twenty and I am already exhausted.” – Elizabeth Wurtzel (Prozac Nation)

“The sun stopped shining for me is all. The whole story is: I am sad. I am sad all the time and the sadness is so heavy that I can’t get away from it. Not ever.” – Nina LaCour (Hold Still)

“Depression is the most unpleasant thing I have ever experienced. . . . It is that absence of being able to envisage that you will ever be cheerful again. The absence of hope. That very deadened feeling, which is so very different from feeling sad. Sad hurts but it’s a healthy feeling. It is a necessary thing to feel. Depression is very different.” – J.K. Rowling

“Some people are just not meant to be in this world. It’s just too much for them.” – Pheobe Stone (The Boy on Cinnamon Street)

“Losing your life is not the worst thing that can happen. The worst thing is to lose your reason for living.” – Jo Nesbo

“Depression is melancholy minus its charms.” – Susan Sontag (Illness as Metaphor)

“Depression is anger turned inward.” – Sapphire (Push)

“Not easy to state the change you made.If I’m alive now, I was dead,
Though, like a stone, unbothered by it.” – Sylvia Plath

Being Alone

Today I’m going to be completely honest with you; something I haven’t done before. Not to say that there wasn’t truth in my previous entries, but today I’ve decided to be more open. For most of my life I’ve felt that being alone was the worst thing in the world. However as I grew up, I came to realize that it might not be such a bad thing. When you’re alone no one can possibly hurt or disappoint you, but more importantly you can never hurt, disappoint or lose anyone. I know that loneliness leads to many psychological diseases; but there are times, when being alone is just easier.

I feel that I’ve been fucking up my own life. I’m usually quite organized, but when it comes to my personal life somehow I’ve managed to make one colossal mistake after the next. It’s possible that subconsciously I’ve been pushing people away on purpose. I’ve always been defensive, for reasons I won’t get into, and now I doing it for no reason. I’m being bitchy to my friends and family for the slightest irritation. Today I hurt a friend of mine and I don’t think he’ll forgive me. I crossed a line, it was unnecessary, idiotic and inexcusable but I did it anyway. I went out to dinner with two close friends and my sister. I was really looking forward to it and it was going great until that point. I was so frustrated and upset that I ended up leaving early. Being alone makes me secure, because I know that there is no one for me to disappoint, not even myself.