Deep Dive: All By Myself

Even as early as my high school years, I was sufficiently self-aware to realize I'm not the easiest person to live with, and I predicted back then that I'd never marry. Yet, while this has been proven wrong—twice (there, I've admitted it)—I've come full-circle back to how I'd envisioned my life at the outset: on my own. But this isn't boo-hoo-woe-is-me-I'm-all-by-myself whining; I genuinely enjoy being alone, and on those occasions I'd like some company, I'll just have lunch or dinner with a friend.

All of which is to say I designed my home solely to satisfy my wants and needs, with no thought given to sharing it with a significant other. Granted, I've not discounted the possibility I might have an overnight guest once in a while, and indeed, one day someone may come to like me and my home and my cats well enough to want to move in. But I accept this is an extremely remote possibility, particularly given my advanced age, failing health and increasing grumpiness, so it's not a goal I've set for myself.

Some people will claim they could never live by themselves. While I won't criticize them for it, I do find it a little sad that they cannot function by themselves. I maintain that the only way to truly know yourself is to see what you're like when you're alone. Solitude can be frightening, but that fear is an invaluable thing to acknowledge and understand.

Perhaps in true antisocial fashion, I believe that cats and trees make much better friends than the vast majority of people. That's not to say I don't have any friends, or dislike those I do. It's simply how I prefer to live, and based on experience, it's a good thing.

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