I lived by myself for four years. It's an experience I think everyone should have, but I think surprisingly few people do. People move from their parents' homes or ones they share with friends into a home they share with their husband or wife without ever getting to enjoy that feeling of being utterly alone - in a good way of course. No parents, no roommates, no partners, just you and your stuff in a place that belongs to no one but you. Of course it has it's draw backs, like if you hit your head on the corner of a cabinet and knock yourself unconscious, no one is going to come and find you, so you better wake up. But living by yourself is a wonderful experience. You learn how to be alone without being lonely, and I think that's a really important lesson. I am thinking of this because I am alone this weekend for the first time in a long time, maybe a year. Matthew went to Tulsa to celebrate his sister's birthday with his family and because plane tickets are ridiculously expensive I stayed behind. At first I didn't know what to do with myself. I spent most of yesterday reading in bed and snuggling the pooch, but today I remembered what I loved about living by myself: the feeling of being comfortable being alone. I woke up late (but not too late), ate breakfast and took a shower. Then I got dressed, did my hair, even prettied up a bit - all just for me. Then Scarlett and I spent the lion's share of the late morning and afternoon outside. I worked on thinking my deep philosophical thoughts, took notes (which I too often forget to do), and actually made some progress, then I read my just for fun book. After awhile I was pretty hungry. I came in and made a big delicious salad and took it outside and ate it while listening to music I love and enjoying the beautiful spring day under my apricot tree, which today was mine alone.
I know many of us never get the chance to live by ourselves, but I think everyone should take time for just themselves. I used to be scared of doing things alone, but when I lived by myself I learned to enjoy doing things solo. So I challenge everyone to go get some lunch or dinner alone, go to a movie by yourself, or just sit in the silence of your own backyard and take the time to be with you. Wow, this sure is preachy.