The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows defined the word sonder as the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own— populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness.
“Sonder is an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.”
Even just thinking about this for a moment and the enormity of it all begins to sink in. Even if you think, as I do, that your (own) life is pretty dull and boring you have still been through a number of years of different experiences be that people that have come into (and maybe then out of) your life (where are they now?), different places visited, the worries that you have, be them current or past; basically everything that is at the bottom of the first paragraph.
All those experiences are memories and experiences that make you you, some fresh and other sinking deeper into the subconscious and occasionally pulled to the fore by a smell, a music track, a photograph or something else that acts as a trigger. Currently it is making me think inwards, about being unsatisfied with my life as is it will either drive me to a new level of despair or at least get me thinking about changes (but what to change… and how?)
Does Sonder ever enter your thoughts? If so how do you see it?