Thursday, March 4, 2010

Living Alone

John recently went to Cincinnati for a week to visit his sister. When he was gone, I realized a lot of things about myself:

  • I stay up a lot later when there's no one there to regulate my schedule.
  • I hate silence. I have to have the TV, the radio, my mouth, something on.
  • I can watch hours of bad TV that I don't even like, if it means no silence.
  • I won't cook if there's no one to cook for.
  • I find it very hard to do housework if no one else is there.
  • I don't like going places by myself anymore.
I've never actually lived alone. In college, I always had roommates. Then I moved in with my grandparents. Then I lived with Melissa and Kate. Kate was dating Sam and I was dating John, so it was like having four roommates. Then I moved in with John.

Basically, I suck at being alone. I'm not good at it. I don't really like it. Sure, there are times when I do want to be alone, or do things by myself. But most of the time, I want someone to see a movie with, or talk about my day, or cook for, or go out to eat with.

Some people crave being alone. I'm not one of these people. If I go to long without talking to people, I fall into a funk. I noticed I was falling into funks in the evenings, because no one was home with me.

What does this say about me? Maybe I would get used to it over time, adjust to it. But maybe I just really like other people and want to talk to them and hang out with them. I'm just a sociable person.

I also seem to lose my mooring when I'm alone. When John is here, we have a pretty regular schedule - get up, get ready, let dogs out, go to work, workout, cook dinner, eat dinner. When I'm by myself, I'll do things out of order, or not at all. One day after work, I was starving and eat a bunch of cheese and crackers standing up in the kitchen. Then I decided that since I wasn't hungry anymore, that was my dinner. I stayed up much later than I normally would, because there was no schedule for me to go by.

Sometimes I feel bad that I don't like to be alone, like it makes me a bad feminist or something. But that's just the way I am and the way I feel.

What do you guys think? Do you like living alone?


Kate said...

You are not a bad feminist or a lesser person for enjoying being with people. I think it just means you are human. We are pack creatures by nature. When I lived abroad I did most of my traveling alone and spent a good four months mostly by myself. And I did not like it at all. I was very lonely. I felt bad about myself for a long time, wondering whey the Eiffel Tower couldn't be as meaningful when I saw it alone vs. seeing it with another person. I felt I would be a more poetic, deeper, more soulful person if I could find joy in being along. But I have come to terms with my desire to be with people. Don't feel bad, and the next time you are alone, just give me a call. :)

Brian in AK said...

Interesting post. I think I'm just the opposite. I love being alone (said the man with a family of 6, almost 7). I remember fondly being at home alone in the evenings. I love going out to eat by myself when traveling or whatever. I like to read or write in restaurants. I like to travel alone, on planes and in hotels. I think it would be cool to spend a winter alone in a cabin (or in a big hotel a la The Shining). I say that, but hanging out with my kids is bliss, and being with Stephanie is the very definition of being at home in the world. So it's good to have both.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin