I was an unwed, pregnant 18 year old and I didn't know one person at the school or in any of my classes.
I glanced around at the faces, seated at the tables and as I heard the chatter of conversation and the peals of laughter, for the first time in my life, I felt lonely.
I mean, I certainly wasn't alone. The cafeteria was full of co-eds. And I was carrying a brand new life inside of me. I wasn't ever really alone, yet I was so lonely. But, I had an hour to waste before my next class and the library was too quiet for me with my jumbled and overwhelming thoughts, so the cafeteria is where I ended up, ended up feeling lonely.
I recognized two people I went to elementary school with and knew they would never remember me. I had a huge crush on the boy 8 years ago and when he looked my way, probably from the hole I was staring into him, he smiled and nodded my way, assuming I had to be someone he once knew, but never came over to my table to find out how. It's hard to hide five months of pregnancy when you are 98 pounds.
I actually said hello to the girl who became a fast friend of mine when she started attending my middle school in 7th grade. I remembered spending the night at her house. But, she only smiled and said, "Oh, yeah, hi!" when I reminded her of my name and then she sat with another group of friends.
How blessed was I to not have ever felt lonely until I was 18 years old, in a new place, on a new journey, when I was so very not alone.