By Eric Noel Roman
As I sit and try to come up with a topic to write about, I find it hard to think of something. For the last six months I have been alone. The television is making noise while I sit at my desk, and I take notice that the holiday cheer of togetherness has begun to pop up in commercials. The holiday season has snuck up on us. As I hear the jingles, I am quickly reminded that this time of the year can be a rough time for many.
Since March, many of us have been forced into isolation with no real end in sight. In addition, this is the time of the year that depression has a tendency to spike and we begin to feel more alone than any other time of the year. Usually, this can be attributed to the stereotypical image of what the holiday season symbolizes. Large families spending countless wonderful hours together creating gingerbread house memories that are supposed to always make us feel warm and cozy.
Over the years, many have experienced the holiday season alone and have learned how to cope by either creating their own traditions, or piecing together an extended family of similar people. This year has an added obstacle to the latter solution. Many families have closed their doors to guests for the safety of their own kin. A reasonable reaction that has left many to be more isolated than usual.
Just as the flow of ideas began to pour out, I took notice of a lone palm tree just outside of my window. As I lost myself in the beauty of this flourishing, green, majestic palm swaying in the wind, I also noticed the other trees just a few hundred feet away. A small group of trees that were within close proximity appearing as if they needed each other to grow and flourish with rich foliage. However, this palm waved at me in the wind reminding me that it is great to be standing tall alone. There are no restrictions in any direction. I can flow with the wind in any direction. I rely on no other source to hold up my trunk and branches. I do not have small fragile limbs. I fan out with large fronds. I create the coconut fruit, a source of rich nutrients. I have the ability to share my nutritious knowledge freely.
In turn, I have learned during these times of isolation that alone is great. It provides time to improve and learn. Knowing that being alone is great and ignoring the stereotypes of the season can lead down a path of joy. We might not have open doors this year to come together, but we do have a strong tree trunk that will nourish us and keep us standing tall and independent.
Eric Noel Roman DJ, obstacle racer, motivational writer from North Miami Beach, living life one day at a time, and making a difference one person at a time.