at least lonliness doesn't lead to tattoos

Things I did whilst doing nothing

I have consistently used my non-child weeks for lots of things: working late, going to the gym, going out with friends, dates. Sometimes lots of dates, but not lately.

This week I planned absolutely nothing except a brief after work meeting with two colleagues.

It wasn’t all deliberate – I usually plan a couple of weeks in advance, especially since most of my girlfriends have busy life and work schedule and we all need advance planning, but I have been traveling each of the last three child-free weeks. I had planned things for me and the kid, but not much else.

So I found myself with a set of shockingly empty evenings. Sure, I had a foursome on Sunday night. Maybe that excitement was supposed to last a couple of days. It didn’t.

Tony has been traveling and rather quiet. I saw him for an overnight late last week where he showed up to basically go to sleep – I greeted him from my bed, in my pyjamas, a book and glass of port in hand. The next morning Liam was dropped off early and the three of us had a nice visit. But I feel like I barely talked to Tony.

I knew it was unlikely I would see him during this week, but he said he would play it by ear depending on how his shoot went.

I have been to the gym twice after work. Otherwise I’ve been at home. I haven’t minded the quiet. I’ve eaten alone, tidied up, cleaned and put away my winter stuff, sat at my kitchen island and written blog posts, texted some girlfriends, and twice talked to my Bumble match.

I’ve eaten unhealthy food from my freezer, where I also found four open bags of frozen peas. I succumbed to my craving for stove top made buttered popcorn.

I didn’t get around to cleaning up the rest of my office, which has been on my list since last summer. I did finally get my new will completed. I finished watching Stanley Kubrick’s Lolita, so if that’s not an accomplishment I don’t know what is.

As much as I was okay with the solitude, I was only okay to a point. I missed my girlfriends and non-work socialization. For a few minutes one night, I felt a bit like I was part of only one person’s inner circle and the rest didn’t really care if I wasn’t communicating. But I shook those thoughts out of my head. I know I have several good friends who care deeply about me.

And one thing I didn’t do is succumb to going back to online dating just because I was momentarily bored and lonely. Because that would likely just trade bored and lonely for frustrated and depressed. No thank you. I’d rather have Stanley Kubrick movies and frozen peas.

24 thoughts on “Things I did whilst doing nothing

  1. I wonder about the feeling of being alone…and I’m finally starting to realize it must be totally normal and everyone experiences it. I just tend to think we are social creatures by nature. Some more so than others, so the lack of socialization is more sorely missed.

    Like you, some nights I’m perfectly ok with it and some nights I’m more lonely. But thanks to you hitting me with a mallet more often than not, I learned even the lonely times are more valuable than wasting time on the
    Dating sites when your heart isn’t in it.

    • This makes me happy. Not the feeling of being alone (and I completely agree it’s common for everyone to feel in some measure, at some points in time)…. but that you are starting to value your own time, effort, and energy πŸ™‚

  2. Ha! I feel the lonely right now, and it’s not even evening!
    I will try to go and have breakfast, at 3pm, that should help a bit πŸ™‚
    One thing I know is that dating doesn’t make you less lonely. It may make me feel more so, actually.

    • Yes that’s very true Dawn!! Sometimes I’m an eternal optimist and think it’s worthwhile. These days it just makes it worse to hope to find someone (even if it’s minimal hope) and then be continuously disappointed. That definitely makes me feel more alone.

      • Yes, I know πŸ™‚
        It’s only when we manage to get away from that feeling of loneliness and accept to be content by ourselves that it’ll get better. At least I hope πŸ˜‰
        Or maybe it’s just me missing my love, that could be it too. πŸ™‚

        • I felt lonely in my marriage, and I’ve felt lonely other times as well. I’m okay being single but I prefer to have more socialization than what I experienced this past week. All that to say, I don’t think I will ever escape the occasional feeling of loneliness, and that’s okay. What wouldn’t be okay for me would be filling my time with dating just to avoid that feeling. It doesn’t work.

          • I totally agree once again Ann.
            If I have a choice, I prefer feeling lonely when I’m alone than when I’m with someone πŸ™‚
            Hope for his sake he gets his had out of his arse, otherwise… he doesn’t know what he’s missing πŸ˜‰

          • Yes, it was a pretty scary week, from what I understand. Things can only get better, can’t they? πŸ™‚
            And worse comes to worst, it doesn’t happen and it wasn’t meant to be πŸ™‚

  3. I’ve succumbed to my loneliness and aloness. It has become a big part of who I am. And that’s why when I’m with my boys, I feel so alive. But there are days where I feel I’m going crazy and that I do need people to talk to, so I Skype with my siblings lol

    • I think it’s great that you have something beneficial to do when you’re feeling that way – I am a big believer in trying to find the behaviors that re-train us to make better decisions. So me not using online dating as a time-filler or panacea is really good… when I first became single that’s absolutely what I would have done. Now I’m okay to not have plans… because I feel okay single, and I’ve rebuilt a number of my friendships. Generally, I feel whole (but of course I’d like to feel fuller!!)

  4. Sometimes I like being alone. In late May I’ll be away for 9 nights and am looking forward to quiet evenings by myself. Then I remember 10 weeks of quiet evenings when I’ve been away for Army stuff and it got to be too much

What do you think?