What of the individual?

I asked my sister not long ago, what I was like when I was a child.

At 14 years old my sister was kicked out of my parents house but she lived with us until I was four.

She told me that I was always really happy, smiled all the time, but that I loved being by myself, and my parents worried about that. In reality, they looked down on it.

When I was a teenager, I was the same. I did not have a lot of friends, and I did not want a lot of friends. I never had anyone over to my house, and I read a lot. I reconnected with my neighbour not too long ago and he asked me if I still read. I asked him why and he replied that he remembered as a teenager that I read all the time.

My parents used to say it was my fantasy world, and they didn’t like it. Nothing has really changed. I believe that I am essentially a positive and optimistic person, though of course, I love being negative too.

But I have always loved being by myself. In fact, my comfort in being alone, surrounded by water and nature has only increased as I’ve reached middle age.

In a country that is increasingly hostile to the individual, demonstrating a penchant to adhere to group think, a collective, I wonder, what will become of the individual, the one person who thinks for him or herself and who does not find any benefit from joining like-minded groups? The contrarian? The person who is incapable of following the herd?

I guess, perhaps, we will only grow more introverted.

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