This part of my life is entitled ‘7 Minutes in Heaven’ when it comes to giant tubs of hummus and ‘Never Have I Ever’ when to comes to sex and also, truth I might have dared to dance around in my underwear to a Backstreet Boys medley for an hour last night. it is also entitled ‘Two Truths and a Lie’ because everything I say, do, and write can and will eventually be used for awkward company ice-breaker activities and/or high school coming-of-age drinking games.
My editor that I don’t yet have will tell me this is entirely too long of a book title because I’m not Fiona Apple and I’m definitely never going to sell one copy of any publication if I can’t at least tweet the name of it in less than 140 characters.
And alas, my fake, imaginary editor has a point. I would have killed it during Shakespearean times. Lengthy, floral writing FTW. Less thus and thous. Same general metaphorical concept. Thine word game is divine ninja-level. Nay, I digress.
I have officially lived by myself for four weeks and three days. And it has been nothing but instance after instance of pure unadulterated ecstasy. Because as it turns out, I am absolutely spectacular at living by myself. There is a simple kind of joy that comes with turning the key to a place that is all yours full of material possessions that are also all yours. Even the air in the place is mine. My plans are mine, my food is mine, the day is mine and I’m just seizing it into submission.
It is delight.
There are struggles. As with any change. For instance, wearing dresses that zip up the back and spending nearly ten minutes of interpretative zipper-related gymnastics with the simple goal of freeing myself from the garment I personally imprisoned myself in.
Some nights, I get a little scared. Irrational fears beyond burglars and homeless transients staring at me as I sleep but rather more along the lines of the grudge girl slowly but surely taking up real estate in my furnace room and plotting her attack on my brain. Also, zombies. Always zombies.
No one wakes me up when I’m late and no one can help me make a game time fashion decision. Luckily, I rarely sleep in and my fashion sense is impeccable, so neither is a huge concern.
The concept of being alone is both an illusion and a reality. In reality, I live by myself. I am alone. I am one person living in one place. I make meals for one. I watch solo television. I dance and I sing and I laugh all by myself.
Society’s perception of being alone will tell you this makes me damaged. I am the scene in The Holiday where Kate Winslet’s character starts weeping (because British people do not cry, they weep) into her stove and starts intensely inhaling carbon monoxide briefly intent on ending her solo misery with suicide. I am Bridget Jones frumpy diary. I am Liz Lemon’s Chinese leftovers. I am Elle Woods post-break up, Mia Thermopolis pre-makeover, Julia Stiles before Heath Ledger, and the entire Never Been Kissed plot before what’s his name finally makes out with Drew Barrymore finally ridding her of that horrible nickname- Josie Grossie.
Society’s perception of being alone will also tell you this makes me empowered. I am the scene in Charlie’s Angels when Cameron Diaz dances in her superhero underwear because she freaking can! I am Juno MacGuff’s hamburger phone. I am Erin Brockovich’s leopard print bra. I am Carrie Bradshaw post-breakup, Hermione Granger pre-makeover, Veronica after JD, and the final dance scene in The First Wives Club.
Because the truth is, we believe what we want to believe and we see what we want to see and my truth is different than yours but absolutely correct and yet somehow your truth is much truer than mine but all of it is true because we decide it to be.
I can be both needy and powerful because it’s all about how I see myself. And how you see me. And how I choose to let how you see me, make me see myself.
If that made no sense- which it probably didn’t- allow me to explain.
You meet this guy. This girl. This person. Whatever. You really like them. No, I mean you REALLY like them. You think about them in a way that your brain just does that thing in Mario cart where you just drift into a median and keep crushing (get it) your little heart cart against the idea of this person which is really just a wall but all you see is windows and star power.
And you’re texting them trying to be relaxin maxin chillin all cool but really you’re internally freaking out because omg, Mario cart is jumping off every race track into the great abyss of love. And you’re all do they like me? Why aren’t they texting me back? Why didn’t she call me? What does his text mean? Screenshot. Snapchat. Long drunk conversation with stranger who doesn’t give two shits. Compulsively checking iPhone in a similar fashion to the day your online shopping order will arrive. Where the hell are my shoes?
And meanwhile, this other person you so desperately want to play with is off pretending to be Zelda or something like not even on the same gaming platform because they are pursuing someone playing monopoly who is pursing someone who doesn’t like games at all but just prefers to drink beer.
And you’re over here analyzing everything and thinking, alright, alright, alright-I think they like me! When in reality, you’re dazed and confused and they don’t at all and they never will but you can’t see that truth until you finally cross that heart racetrack finish line and hang up your delusional joy sticks and finally turn off the game you’ve been playing and look a different truth, in the face.
Because perception- much like cheese on macaroni and sweatpants on couches- means everything. And perception, much like the size of your…truck and Tinder personal messages- means nothing.
I like living by myself. But I don’t consider myself alone. You might never want to live by yourself because then you’d have to see yourself differently. That’s the truth for you. You choose to believe it. Just like you choose to believe someone cares about you or someone doesn’t care about you or that you aren’t alone because you have a roommate or that you are alone because you don’t.
This part of your life is entitled, I see things the way I want to, until one day I don’t. That’s called experience. That’s called change. That’s called adaption and maturity. That’s called reality. That’s called perception. But above all, that’s called life.
And on that note, this part of my life is called, I’m happy. And despite other’s perspectives on my reality, at least for today- that is nothing but the simple truth.