Monday, May 15, 2017

My Living Alone Experiment

It's been two weeks since starting our separation and so far things have gone well for both of us as we learn more about ourselves, both as individuals and as members of a couple.

I was amazed at the outpouring of love and support in this decision to step back and take time to assess my life and myself.  It feels terribly selfish to me yet, but very necessary.  Maybe it was the turning of 65 and wondering if I've really done everything I've hoped to accomplish in this lifetime.  It seems too old for a "mid life" crisis, but then I've always been a late bloomer, so I guess I'm right on schedule.

At first I kept myself busy setting up things, as did he.  Now things are slowing down and I've had more time to start doing more introspection into what it is I really want and praying for guidance.

It seems such an easy question..."What do I want out of life?"  But it is not.  I'd been so busy most of my life taking care of my children, my parents, my job, etc that somewhere I got lost in the shuffle.  It's hard to start a conversation without using the "we" form.  When you turn the M in me upside down you get WE.  That's how I've been feeling, like I was turned upside down and ME was stuck on its back like a turtle struggling to right itself.

In my desire to keep harmony in the home I found myself turning away from my own desires and just going along with what my husband wanted.  It seemed easier at the time, but the price tag was high.  This is the same pattern I had with my previous marriages as well.  Maybe I'm just a wimp that hates confrontation.  But one thing it is not is living an authentic life.

It's a bit like being on a merry go round and feeling dizzy but being afraid to jump off.  I finally got to a part in my life where I had the courage to let go and take my changes of crashing to earth.  The initial landing might be rough, but then the spinning stops and your mind begins to clear.

The first thing I found in living alone is how important music is to my soul.  When I got into the karaoke club I rediscovered my love of music and singing.  When I would chant the morning blessings at the synagogue I had a regular outlet for singing that has been sorely missed.

Being in the billiards club gave me a feeling of being included, valued and needed.  I find that concentrating on perfecting my skills hones my concentration and calms me.

Pickleball has always been a constant in my life and continues to provide a physical outlet and form of exercise as well as fellowship with others.

I am still very much an introvert, but find that I need much more outside contact with others than I every imagined.  Perhaps I'm a very outgoing introvert?  Can one become an extrovert over time?

At times I find myself adrift and feeling alone and getting teary eyed, then other times I feel like I'm a much needed vacation with only myself to consider.

Each day I feel less afraid and look forward to what revelation the next day will bring and searching inward for what it is that fulfills me.  We'll see what the next two weeks bring.

Long Live the Queen  


  1. I hadn’t thought of the ‘we’ vs ‘me’ like that but the struggling turtle is a perfect description. I’ve long recognized the ‘wheeze’ in my speaking and have struggled to eliminate it.

    While thinking about your question about if you can become an extrovert and your description of your current social connections I realize that’s the perfect answer for fulfilling my need to socialize - activity focused and a set amount of time, then I can be home again.

  2. Cheryl, your blog is very introspective. It is so interesting when you say you're an introvert when I think of all the friends I've made through you. (But, it also reminds me that we can be confused about the terms introvert/extrovert). The one thing I've wondered is what you're doing to feed your wonderful creative side. I know for awhile it was adding life and color to your various campsites, then setting up and adding furniture and fun to your new place in AZ. But, it can't be long before you start to really CREATE again. As a side note, I remember watching the first year of Survivor and seeing the participants laying around moaning about this or that and thinking that I would grab some palm fronds, pieces of bark, sea shells and I'd be creating something. I've always felt you have that same instinct and need. Be introspective but feed the creative beast!

  3. I've been where you are before, but I really have no advice or tips. We made it back together after a short while, but with a new respect for each other's space. As for your creativeness, I'm wondering when you'll be getting back to that too. New clubs and activities are nice, but your creative talents are awesome. You have a great day my friend, hugs, Edna B.

  4. Many thoughts that I would like to share and yet my brain is still waking up. There is a gift in living alone and getting to know the "me" in the "we". Would love to talk sometime. Enjoy embracing "the Queen" that you are!

  5. I must not know you as well as others...You are probably the most extroverted person I know though your personality and talents!