Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Adult Contact, Optional

My life has changed drastically since 2009, and not just in the ways I expected.  I went from a fairly social, working full-time out of the home mother-to-be to what I am today and it hasn't even been nine months.  It's enough to make your head spin, if you think about it.

Before I had a baby, there were so many things I didn't understand.  You can't just take the baby everywhere you go.  You can't make a child take a nap. You can't explain to an eight-month-old that pulling hair and biting are considered rude in your culture, and many others.  You also can't explain work, chores, and what in the bloody hell a laptop is used for... cuz it's certainly not for eating.

I kinda knew this was coming for me. You know life will be different, but listing the coming changes arbitrarily in your head pales in comparison to living them out daily.  I'm mostly happy with the changes, but I've also learned something I didn't expect at all.  That social part of me I mentioned? It likes to be a hermit sometimes.

I've also enjoyed quality alone time, even as a kid.  I love to read a book, which is by nature a solitary activity, and I've spent many a lunch time doing so. In a corner, on my own, just me and a book and a turkey sandwich.  I've also chosen a profession as a writer.  Again, this is by nature a very solitary activity since everything happens inside your mind.  Sorry, but no one else can get invited to that party.  Granted, I probably share my work more readily than you average author, but my inclusion stops there. I don't write by group decision, though I am always open to feedback.

I often wonder if it weren't for social networking sites how different my life would be.  Living here in an apartment more removed from public transportation and many of my friends, with a dog and a baby as my only steady company, you'd think a person would go mad.  I have my lonely days -- yesterday was one of the worst -- but then I have days like today where I revel in the peace and quiet of naptime, the joy of a cup of coffee, and a list of new chapters waiting to be written.  Even writing some articles sounds like a good idea when I have this quality time to myself.

I really do love to be alone. But I had two misconceptions about this before I had Ellie.  The first was that I would be terribly lonely all the time, craving adult interaction.  But out of, say, ten days that only happens for one.  The other misconception was that I'd run out of things to do and wind up just sitting on the couch, watching soaps.  (No offense if you do watch soaps, but I'd rather poke my own eyeballs out and feed them to the dog.  Seriously.) Before the dog, the baby, and my writing "habit," I used to get lonely at night when Mike had rehearsal, so this was a real concern.  As it turns out, I've got plenty of ways to keep myself occupied. 

I just have to make sure I leave the house once in a while.

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