Personal Narrative 6: Isolation Can Change you

Reads: 23  | Likes: 0  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 0

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Status: Finished  |  Genre: Editorial and Opinion  |  House: Booksie Classic

A personal narrative about why isolation can change you.

Isolation Can Change You

 

Isolation is physically being separated from people. It can be anything from being in Antarctica to just being in the house alone for an extended period of time. Loneliness is a much deeper issue, more mental than physical. You could be lonely and physically alone, or you can be lonely while being surrounded by people because you aren’t connected to them. Isolation and loneliness go hand in hand together. Isolation can even change a person completely, but isolated people can change back if people support them and help them connect to the world again so they’re not alone. I learned this when my long-isolated friend came back.

It was a normal day, during winter. I was on winter break from school, and I just had breakfast. I was thinking about a friend I had, almost two years ago. His name was Steve, and he was really nice. He was definitely an extrovert and was always talking. He was also pretty crazy and full of energy. Sometimes he would run in place because he was so jittery. Sadly, two years ago he moved to Canada. He moved to a little house on a hill, with very few people around, and the only time he would see people was when he went to get groceries, once a month. He was homeschooled, and the only people he saw frequently were his parents because he lived with them.

I then heard my doorbell ring. I remembered my mom saying someone would come over today, but I couldn’t remember who. I walked to the door, unlocked it, and opened it. Standing there was the person I was just thinking of - Steve! Outwards, he looked much different than usual, but I felt that he was different inside too. I asked him and his parents to come in. They said that they had just bought the house right next to ours and moved here. I was ecstatic! I also didn’t know how I missed them moving in. 

Steve and I went up to my room, while his parents talked to my parents downstairs. He was unusually quiet. I asked him what he wanted to do, and he said he was fine with anything. I thought this was just the awkwardness that happens when you meet someone after a while, but this went on for a few days. We would hang out together, but it didn’t really seem like he was in it. I asked him what was wrong, and he told me everything. 

Steve said that while he was in Canada, he didn’t have any friends his age or people that he could relate with. He told me that sometimes he would just be in his room, all by himself doing something. To shorten things - he was isolated from everyone and just really lonely. I felt bad for him, but then I had an idea. I could help him make more friends here and then he might be back to himself again.

The next day, I introduced Steve to some more of my friends around the neighborhood. In total, he made five friends that day. At first, things were slow and we didn’t really do much (usual stuff when making new friends), but in a few weeks, everyone started becoming much closer to each other. Steve even started to open himself up again and he seemed happier. Eventually, he became the old Steve I knew, or as close to it as possible. All of us would regularly hang out together and go places with each other. Steve even got involved in clubs and groups of his own.

Isolation can change one of your closest friends into someone you’ve never known. Although it is in real life, authors isolate characters in their stories to make them deeper and to give them more meaning. This connects the reader to the book more and invests them. One good example of this is in the book “You Don’t Know Me”, by David Klass.

In chapter 25, page 247, paragraph 2, this happens: “And lastly, a very nice girl was heard to remark earlier this evening that I am the best boy in my school, and as crazy as that claim was, her words and her tone have stayed with me.” Before the Winter Dance, John was lonely. He thought no one cared for him and he had no one to go and talk to. After Violet Hayes asked him out and talked to him, he realized that he didn’t have to be isolated anymore. He opened up and he changed as a person. For the first time, he fought back against his not-father because he had the strength to. Connecting with the world made John stronger.

Another example of this is in chapter 26, page 253, paragraph 3: “You’re flesh of my flesh and blood of my blood, my only baby, and nothing else comes close to that… You see, I could hear the truth of it in her voice… So it appears that I was wrong all along.” After months of being mentally and emotionally separated from each other, John and his mother have finally connected. They aren’t isolated anymore, and John’s realized that his fears were wrong all along. Now John is happier and isn’t trapped anymore. He can finally open up to someone he should have been able to all along - his mother.

Although isolated people may seem unreachable and distant, you can change them back by connecting with them and helping them connect to others. One way of doing this is to show them good books and connecting them to members of that community. Speaking of reading, let’s go back to that question - why do people read? So far, I’ve said that the purpose of reading is to learn, reflect, feel emotion, connect with the world, connect with ourselves, and become better people. Adding on to all of these statements, we also read to find more people we can relate with and go to. Reading can help you build or join a community and it can keep you from being isolated.


Submitted: July 21, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Atiksh Paul. All rights reserved.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Add Your Comments:


Facebook Comments

More Editorial and Opinion Essays

Other Content by Atiksh Paul