Being alone, does not necessarily mean you are lonely or unfriendly.

We all need to be alone from time to time.  Some early risers prefer pre-dawn, or dawn, when the world is not upon us yet.  Everyone has a clean slate with yesterday gone — except in our Memory Bank.

The peace and tranquility of early morning is missed by late sleepers.

Birds chirping at the bird feeder, the cracking sound as they open sunflower seeds.  Sounds many city dwellers miss.

Rather than being alone, we sometimes desperately seek any kind of companionship and don’t find it.  One such early morning, I looked up various sayings about being alone and found this one:  “Better to live alone; with a fool there is no companionship.”

There are all sorts of lyrics to songs, poetry and quotes by famous people about preferring solitude and it is not a vice to wish to be alone,

Even the most gregarious person seeks solitude now and then – almost a luxury on our over-crowded planet.

And yet, I recall lines from John Donne’s  “No man is an island,”  in which he wrote, “All people are connected to other people and dependent on other people.”  Never more true than in our declining years.  Old friends, and devoted children are luxuries that some are not privileged to enjoy.

At times we may attend a movie with empty seats all around us, and someone thoughtlessly intrudes on our space by sitting very close to us. Or having someone sit next to us in a restaurant with room elsewhere. Perhaps they are lonely.

The animal world seeks companionship too as seen by elephants who travel in packs and our feathered friends, with a gaggle of geese in V-formation, the ones in back honking encouragement.

Alone time is good to gather our thoughts, shutting out the world. Sadly, solitude is often forced on us with the death of a spouse, so we must learn to adapt.

I ran across this meaningful definition of the difference between loneliness and solitude.  Loneliness is to express pain of being alone.  Andsolitude to express the glory of being alone.

Today we can be in instant touch with anyone anywhere, or simply disconnect for a time to enjoy our solitude.  Finding the right balance is the key.