I'm at a point in my life where I really enjoy my solitude. I'm not lonely. I have many friends and a small but wonderful family and can connect with anyone I choose at any time by phone, text, Facebook, email, Twitter, etc. I just prefer, for the most part, to be by myself.
I'm thinking about this now because I'm at the end of a two week medical hiatus from work and will be returning tomorrow. Oh how I'm dreading it. During these past two weeks, I was in more pain than usual, got some upsetting medical updates and had severe fatigue. I think I only left my home 6 times during that two week period. But, despite how I was feeling physically, emotionally I felt incredibly free! I slept when and where I wanted (yes, more than once fell asleep on the couch). I played stupid computer games without criticism; I cooked, read, watched TV and Netflix movies, spent way too much time on Facebook, researched more about CCSVI and made some good contacts, listened to music, meditated, ruminated, and really indulged myself by not creating tasks for myself, other than getting to medical appointments.
Too hot out today? Do the grocery shopping tomorrow - brilliant! How did I not realize this before? I'm considered to be a pretty intelligent person. Couldn't I have figured this out? It's so simple! I've had to slow down a lot since my MS diagnoses but now I see I was still pushing myself to do more than necessary, and further, creating strategies for getting it done and ticking it off my "to do" list. But because I had to stay home with my feet elevated, the to-do list didn't get done and amazingly, the world didn't end!
Now I realize that these are two extremes - so I am resolved to find some middle ground and make more time to do less. (That doesn't sound like it makes sense but it does to me.)
I love that when I'm home alone I have complete control over my actions. Since I no longer completely control my body, I guess the type-A in me needs to retain control over as much as I can. But it's also that I don't have to force myself to behave in a socially acceptable way, as I need to do at work. No need to put on a smile, to please others, to pretend not to be in pain, to reassure others that I'm fine; no need to worry about bladder problems in public, to concentrate intensely on a task only to find my mind wandering; to struggle each morning just to get dressed; no need to pretend to be stronger than I am because, you know what, it's exhausting!
As I re-read this, it may sound like I am very antisocial and selfish. But I don't think I am. I simply enjoy being with myself just as much as I enjoy being with people I love. I think that's healthy. If you don't enjoy your own company, how can you expect others to enjoy being in your company?
At any rate, my two weeks of solitude come to an end tomorrow morning. I'm going to try and take what I've learned about myself and apply it to my daily living. Will I revert to my old type-A self? Time will tell. Check back when you can to see where I'm at.