I Am My Best Company
By Marquesa Lola
I have never lived alone before. I left my family home and I moved in with my partner almost immediately. Five months ago, after 40 years of living with my partner, I found myself living alone in the middle of a world pandemic. And I realized that I am my best company. Today, I want to reflect on the benefits and challenges of this milestone in my life.
Living alone is giving me the time to work on the most important relationship in my life; the relationship I have with myself. For many years, I have neglected the person I spend most of the time with “Me”.
My whole life, I have dedicated my time to taking care of others, feeling I was not getting enough in return. As the oldest child in a family of five siblings, my parents relied on me to be responsible for my sisters. That probably set me up for a lifetime of caring for others. Later, as an adult, I dedicated my life to support hundreds of students and my own family with all my heart. I believed, at the time, it was selfish to look after myself and rarely took the time to think about my wellbeing and happiness.
“I have neglected the person I spend most of the time with “Me”.“
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Today, I find myself living alone, in the middle of a pandemic with only one person to take care of, Marquesa Lola, and I am loving it. All the attention I gave to others, I am now receiving from the person I trust the most, Me. I am learning to take the time to love myself because I deserve it. All that love and support I will continue giving around will be enhanced as I learn to embrace the concept of self- love. I read that a woman writes with lipstick on her bathroom mirror the words: “I am enough” every day. I have tried it myself finding this simple act of affirmation extremely uplifting. Let’s celebrate loving ourselves to be able to love others better!
Living alone is allowing me to strengthen my relationships with family and friends. It has allowed me to examine those relationships and to evaluate the ones I don’t get much benefit from. I am learning to identify who adds positiveness and who adds toxicity to my life. This allows me to choose the people I want to be present in my life as friends and who are those people I just want to keep as acquaintances. Solitude has provided the time I need to examine all my relationships and prioritize who I want in my life from now on.
“By far the greatest benefit to living alone has been to be able to make my own decisions, big or small.”
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Being alone has also allowed me the flexibility and time to explore new things. I always felt uneasy to do certain things in front of my partner or my family. You may ask yourself: What would you want to do without an audience? Well, I love sing-alongs and dancing. Now, I can dance to my favorite music in the kitchen. I can watch any television show regardless of how silly the show is, go to bed, eat, go for a walk, paint, and meet anyone I want, at any time I wish, and without anyone judging me for it. This is a huge plus of living alone.
Living alone has allowed me to create my own spaces at home. When I found myself living on my own, I gave my bedroom’s furniture away and I redecorated my new bedroom. When I look around my new space, I see myself in it now. Everything around me is mine, my taste, and my choice. I feel more comfortable, to the point that I sleep a lot better these days. My room looks beautiful and I love it!
By far the greatest benefit to living alone has been to be able to make my own decisions, big or small. For the last 40 years, every decision I took was consulted with my partner or my family. Now, I don’t have to ask anyone for “permission” to make choices and that is liberating. I started with small decisions such as buying new furniture for my new bedroom and moved to more important decisions. I have adopted a pet without consulting anyone, I am making decisions for my retirement, and I am learning to manage my finances.
“Living alone can be challenging, but you can learn to enjoy your own company“
Living alone can be challenging, but if you can learn to enjoy your own company, add some healthy routines, and make regular plans to meet your friends and family, it can be freeing and rewarding. My experience of living alone is not a lonely one. If you live alone, YOU are definitely in good company!!!!!! Enjoy a single living!!
These words of encouragement are dedicated to my lovely sister who, like me, is learning to walk this path alone but not lonely! Si se puede!