Unsettlement

I don’t think you need to adjust so much to other people as you have to with yourself when you start living alone for the first time in your life. I feel like the last year has been just a series of repetitions in so many ways. I start. I hesitate. Come to a standstill. Stop. Now weep. Is that what it’s going to be again? Am I that hard to please? I might be jumping way too far.

So many things that I didn’t know about myself that I’ve only just discovered.

  1. I’m no good at boiling something in the microwave without having it spill over. I don’t know what it is about being watched when you’re trying to cook but it unnerves me. I creepily try to eat at the most odd hours now.
  2. I’m having a hard time not judging people only because I feel like I’ve constantly been under the radar over the past few days. Minutely scrutinized for inconsistencies. Been under watchful gazes. I’ve tried my best to be myself and I’ve done satisfactorily well, I believe. I’ve watched how I went from nervously touching my hair when talking to someone way older than me to resting my chin on my palm in rapt attention.
  3. I feel like I can see through some people and then again others are so difficult to read. People all over the world are mostly the same. It feels odd to say that as if I was going to move to another country and expect to meet a different breed of humans. We’re just all creatures of habit. It’s amusing the things one can get accustomed to.
  4. Somehow, I just can’t be sure if I have turned off the light when I leave the room. I’ve been going back and forth, upstairs, downstairs double the times to recheck. I don’t know what it means to care so much about these things. But I do know that being obsessive about them is certainly not a good sign.
  5. Living alone doesn’t bring so much freedom as it does responsibility. So easy to get confused with the two, even though they’re hardly the same.
  6. I must stop leaving the keys in the door.
  7. I’ve found that some people respect me far more than I deserve and I’m adjusting to that, too.
  8. I’ve found that I have a capacity to love far greater than the capacity to hate. Maybe when people continuously disappoint you, all that anger and distaste piles up like grime around the soft corners of your heart. I’m all cleaned up now. The rooms of my heart are open and I will accommodate as many as I can and keep them grounded in there.
  9. I can honestly say I’ve known money’s worth and always been wise about that knowledge. I’ve known all my life that I must spend reasonably and that money is important but not everything and definitely not more important than love, safety, genuine concern and graceful words. But only now do I feel that I could do so much more if I had that kind of money. The kind of money that doesn’t make you think twice before buying yourself a meal at the mall or debating about the size of your drink. I don’t think I’ve ever felt like I needed to make money as much as I do now.
  10. This transition has also diverted my inherent pessimism into a structured, rational pessimism. I’m less bitter even when I have good reason to go all out and be furious and hateful. I see people and I think about what their story might be and for a second when my gaze lands upon them, in that moment, they are important to me. They give me a reason to think beyond myself. So often been told that I’m self-centered and I have never been able to rightfully deny it, either. If this isn’t a first step of rectification, I don’t know what else is.
  11. My energies are being split into so many directions and there are a hundred things that feel like they’re begging for my attention all day and night. My source of nourishment for this crass sapping away of energy is always the person I love.
  12. Some people label me as very brave. Others use sophisticated terms such as courageous but really I’m anything but. If anything I’m reckless and I’m a little selfish when it comes to what I want in the moment. I believe that even in my worst moments I’ve been fortunate to have had a few things that kept me going. I know some people who can’t describe the light at the end of their tunnel and my soul crushes in pain when I imagine what it was like. Oh trust me, I know.
  13. Someone I met today told me they wanted a tattoo that read, “Everything happens for a reason.” I said to this person whom I just met a few minutes ago, “You have no idea how many times I’ve repeated and just how much I believed in those words in the last few weeks.”
  14. I’m having no difficulty in staying true to my roots. However, unlike the others I’ve met I have no qualms about cutting off my roots and crawling out of the ground, either.
  15. I’ve realized over the last few weeks that people can overwhelm you in a way that you feel like you’ve merged into a singularity. That the rest of the world is just a swirling ambiguous motion of fractals around you and that when this person moves, you move instinctively and when this person wants to pull away you emerge and grow separately like the newly sprouting branches of a tree. Together or apart, you’re still blooming. That’s what matters.
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13 responses

  1. Number 14. I think it’s about time I cut my own roots.

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    1. It’s interesting that that point was probably the most important one that dawned on me today.

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  2. That’s what I hate about being alone now at my age. The responsibility of everything. No one to help, no one to share things with. It drives me nuts

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    1. I’m sorry to hear that. Well, if you need a listening ear there is definitely one right here in the virtual realm.

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      1. Thanks, I am adjusted as well as can be. It doesn’t help that I moved to another state lately either, but no one can help me but me, I guess. Hugs my friend

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  3. Until I read your blog I had forgotten I lived alone for the first time when I was 16. I didn’t have a car and road the school bus to my high school…my gf took me to the grocery. It was a pretty simple life. That’s when I first learned that I liked being alone. Thanks for this blog.

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    1. It’s the same for me. My boyfriend drives me to buy groceries and I struggle to understand what I need to buy and what I can definitely do without. Though I will say I quite like living alone if it leads me on a road to self-discovery and awareness no matter the trivial troubles along the way.

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  4. Oh my!!!! I just published a similiar blog. Leaving out specifics, you nailed it! With being alone you are forced to cover all of your bases!!!

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    1. Hey! Great to find a kindred soul. Hope you’re having at least a tad easier time than I am, really.

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  5. 12…I hardly know you yet I feel like I’ve known you forever. I may not know you but I feel justified in saying it’s likely your selfishness and recklessness that makes you brave and courageous.

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    1. For a long while this selfishness and recklessness hurt my loved ones and it took me a long time to move over that guilt. I succumbed to living to keep them happy and it didn’t help me at all. Now I’m doing me and for the first time I’m not constantly looking over my shoulder to see who is frowning at me.

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  6. And it’s vastly harder when the last time living alone was decades ago. Imagine the discoveries you make when you have lived with (and raised a family with) someone for 35 years to awake one day and find yourself in a cold bed by yourself.
    It takes time, but you can (should, and will) make it.
    Go. Take each step as it comes. (And share, as it helps both you and us as well.)
    Phred

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    1. I can’t imagine being alone after having spent so much time around people you thought would be around forever. I’m sorry that you have to go through this but you’ll find that you are stronger and capable of dealing with this change when you focus on doing activities that engross you in your free time. Apply the advice you gave me and I guess we will sail ashore on the same boat.

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