30 March 2012

On Being Alone

During this time alone,  I've done a lot of self-reflection.  Something I've realized about my life, is that when I married, I was way too young, 25, way too insecure, and I didn't really know myself, or maybe I knew myself, but I was willing to give up too much of myself.  One of the unexpected blessings of my separation and divorce, has been the opportunity to rediscover myself. 

Now, a lot of my rediscovery happened while married, a result of maturity and motherhood.  In a way, it  probably contributed to the destruction of my marriage, because I stopped compromising myself to meet the needs and desires of someone else.  I also began to realize that there were some very unhealthy habits in my marriage, for which both of us were responsible.  However, I've learned from this experience, and I won't make the same mistakes (or perhaps choices) twice. 

The most important thing that I am learning is how to be alone.   Despite the connotations of the word, "alone," it is not a synonym for lonely.  I don't feel lonely at all. In fact I feel less lonely now than when I was married.  Before the separation, I watched a considerable amount of TV with my ex.  And, I thought I would be watching a ton of television now, but over the last three months, I've only watched one TV show, one movie, and gone on one excursion to the cinema.  I'm averaging less than 90 minutes of media consumption a month, where as while married I probably averaged that per day. It seems I only needed TV to dull the pain of loneliness I felt in my marriage.

Instead, I've been going out to catch live music, going to art exhibitions, writing, researching, reading, cooking, doing Yoga, cycling, going on outdoor excursions to the lake, planning holidays, leading workshops, spending time with my friends and family...the list goes on and on.  Admittedly, sometimes late at night, when the kids are asleep or at their father's house, I start to crave the company of another adult, and when that happens, there is always someone I can call or email.


Colleen said...

Love this post. Even though I never married, I feel I made the same mistakes(?) or choices is a better word, in relationships as u. What scares me now at age 42 of getting married is making myself vulnerable and losing myself. Thankfully I have Claire and u to keep me centered. Love u!

DLeighism said...

You're right Colleen, choices is a much better word than mistakes. :) Love you too!

Anonymous said...

You are a great writer and I admire your courage. I am happy for you and the ways you are discovering yourself/enjoying your time alone.