23:39:00 Karen Li 0 Comments

I woke up feeling strangely refreshed, then I leaned over to check the clock and it read 11pm. So I have been asleep for several hours but this is ridiculous. 
My new strategy lately has been to go to sleep when I'm not productive instead of spending hours on the net doing absolutely nothing. Has it worked? Yes, I'm very productive now. But this strategy has resulted in very odd sleeping and eating patterns. So I'm not sure it's worth it.                                                                                                                                                                            It is so quiet this time of night or early in the morning that makes it easy to concentrate. There is barely anyone online to distract me and there is a sense of alone-ness. 
I've always been a rather independent person. And for the past few years, even more so. People warned me that a PhD would be an isolating experience. They warned me that it would be a 24 hour battle and that I would have a guilt cloud following me around the whole time. They weren't exaggerating. From the moment I wake up, I realize that I'm wasting time, I should be writing, But I'm not. When I'm going for a walk, the thought come back, I should be writing but I'm not. When I'm eating, the thought follows and asks why I'm not writing. The more the thought follows me around, the less I want to write. It's such a frustrating process to write something you like, show it to your supervisor and get the whole page cross out or worst still, have them not being bothered to read your work. This is coming from years of positive reinforcement for my work. And now, no reinforcement. I'm chasing invisible deadlines. 

It's been good having people around me who are going through the process. But I seldom go to work now, because when I do, I feel even more lonely. I'm the only one who turns up to the office with my friends either completed or about to complete. But I can't share my pain with those who aren't going through postgrad (family, friends, church fellowships), they simply don't understand. 

It's the feeling of being surrounded by people without anyone truly understanding you. It's the feeling of being lonely.                                             Lately, I have felt even more lonely then ever. When you develop a special connection with someone, you want to spend as much time with them as possible, when that isn't possible, it just keeps tugging at your heartstrings. Even if you aren't anymore than friends... and when you miss them so much it hurts, you feel even more lonely than ever. But as friends there is only so much you can ask for. 
So what does the bible say about loneliness? 

The Psalmist David, called out to God in his distress. He felt lonely, dejected. 

 16 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
   for I am lonely and afflicted.
17 Relieve the troubles of my heart
   and free me from my anguish.
18 Look on my affliction and my distress
   and take away all my sins.
19 See how numerous are my enemies
   and how fiercely they hate me! Psalms 25.

1 My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
   Why are you so far from saving me,
   so far from my cries of anguish?
2 My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer,
   by night, but I find no rest.Psalms 22.

But rest assured, there is some silver lining. 

because God has said,
   “Never will I leave you;
   never will I forsake you.

Hebrews 13:5

So until next time, even if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can move mountains :)

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