Life’s cruelest irony: the lonely times are when you need to be by yourself

I woke up today in an empty bed in an empty house with an empty feeling echoing in my soul.

I feel very lonely today.

I ate breakfast by myself – although the two pairs of begging eyes at my feet kept me company. Once I start drinking the coffee though, they lose interest and go lie down on the couches to live a dog’s life.

I worked on the landscaping outside today by myself. I lugged 30 lbs bags of mulch to a wheelbarrow where I proceeded to dump the contents. I shoveled it. I got on my own hands and knees to push around the chopped up trees. There wasn’t a single neighbor who even noticed me.

I drove almost 3 hours on a highway by myself. I listened to the country music station until I had heard all the songs multiple times and then I turned it off to listen to my own thoughts. When I had heard all those twice (because I had already been alone with them many times today), I rolled down the windows to have the wind toss my hair around a bit.

I got to my friend’s apartment that I’m staying at only to find that she and her boyfriend have gone out tonight and left me by myself to unpack and settle in. How kind of them to leave me with myself.

I never thought I’d say this…

but I’m tired of being around myself for so many hours. I run out of things to say, my humor is dry and brittle, and I’m sick of hearing myself think. Eventually even I run out of thoughts and just want to sit in silence.

It wouldn’t be so bad being alone if I wasn’t so lonely.

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If you like nerds, raise your hand. If you don’t, raise your standards.

My idea of “getting down” on Friday night is reading my Organic Chemistry textbook in the campus coffee shop at the corner table by the window, sipping a decaf mocha so I can get my coffee fix without the caffeine. At least, that’s how it is tonight. If things get really crazy, I might even paint my nails.

I know, I know, I should really tone it down.

But seriously though, the fact that I don’t have exciting plans on a Friday doesn’t bother me. Too much. The fact that I’m writing a post about it is probably a signal that it bothers me just a little. I DO have a lot of friends here. Several of them have gone home to their families for Labor Day plans and the others are already doing something or are already busy.

I like people. I may be introverted, but I do like to see people. As I was texting a friend the other day, I commented how I could talk his ear off and he agreed that I’ve gotten a lot more talkative this year! I like to hang out with my friends so that we can get even closer and I love to have fun and play euchre with a bunch of people or go to a bonfire (which are my plans for tomorrow night). See? I do have plans!

But there’s something nice about being alone and being able to watch the world go by at a slower pace. I like being able to have no deadlines and to sit here for as long as I want to. I like being able to sip my coffee without wondering if I can finish it before I have to take off to the next place. I like being able to read my Chemistry textbook and take notes in fun, color-coded pens so that my notebook looks pretty. There’s nothing wrong with any of those things. Society would frown upon me doing those things on a Friday night and I’m reminded of that more and more with every glance that comes my way from those who are “having fun.”

What’s so wrong with being a nerd? Why does the word “nerd” carry such negative connotations? I’m wearing my soccer stuff right now so I don’t look like the quintessential college nerd, but what other type of person would be studying on a Friday night? I’m disappointed in myself that I feel bad about doing so. I shouldn’t be apologizing for the type of person that I am and the types of activities that I enjoy! I should take pride in my intellectual abilities.

I guess it’s hard to remain confident for so long when no one else is there to remind you how awesome those parts of you really are. I’ve experienced the single life and the dating life and I’m beginning to remember how important it is for you to be the biggest supporter you have. Sometimes when you’re sitting at the corner table all alone, you are the only company that you have. You should at least like yourself. But it’s better when you can support yourself and the type of person that you are and it’s best when you can compliment yourself and find pride in the person that you have evolved into over the years.

So after a long blogpost and an even longer thought process, I’ve come to this conclusion: I am a nerd.

But most importantly, I like myself.