By: Cyndi Sikora
There’s a phrase that has been popping up quite a bit lately. I now realize it has been ringing in my head a lot for almost 10 years, or longer. “You’re never alone”
Since my junior year in college, I’ve mostly lived by myself. As I go about my days, I often find that I’m talking out loud, even though no one else is there. In my head too, I hear my name called and “talk to myself.” Since I was alone, I would say that I was talking to my cat, or the plants (they need the carbon dioxide, right?). Through a group discussion, it occurred to me that many times it was, and is, the Holy Spirit speaking to me.
A few years ago, I started reading scripture daily. One thing that struck me was the fact that Jesus went off to be alone, a lot. While reading about Jesus going to the mountains alone (Matthew 14:23 & John 6:15) it brought back memories of times I would take a day off work, or evenings when I would go, by myself, to the mountains to snow ski. People let me know they thought this was a crazy thing to do but it brought me peace. I read about widows and others being alone and their situations always turned out well. I wanted to be like that, and began, even more, to never feel alone as my relationship with Jesus grew.
My kid’s high school motto is “Never Alone, Always a Bruin” so for 5 years, when it was just me and the kids in our house, I heard it a lot. Every time I heard that phrase, it made me pause and think “right, I am never really alone.” The high school community and other parents provided me with insights, skills, and tips I didn’t have for raising my teenagers. Their willingness to share with me will always mean the world to me.
Most recently my college aged daughter’s boyfriend posted a picture of himself that caused this phrase to come to mind. He was suited up in his football gear, walking through the tunnel to the field by himself. He captioned it “I walk alone.” It caused a twinge of sadness when I saw this post. When I was with him and my daughter I told him, “You’re never alone.” They quickly explained to me the toughness of walking alone. It gave us a chance to talk about the fact that he has her and me, along with his family for support in playing the game he loves and that they are “never alone” even if they feel like it some days.
I have found that as this phrase keeps coming back to me that there are reminders everywhere that I am never alone. I have seen them in my everyday experiences in those that are still with me and those who have gone before me, like when I make my bed and am reminded of my grandmother or when I eat my dad’s favorite meal in honor of his birthday. The angels and saints and all those I love are with me every time I attend Mass. I am thankful to still spend time with my mom, brother, sisters and brother-in-law’s and friends often.
Now that I’m an empty nester, as some like to call me, similar words from a wonderful woman at church come to mind. “I may be alone, but I’m not lonely.” I’m blessed. I am never alone and neither are you.