I Am My Best Company by Marquesa Lola

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!

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How to Rethink Your Life After Your Lover Betrays You by Marquesa Lola

How to Rethink Your Life After Your Lover Betrays You

By Marquesa Lola

How do you rethink your life after your lover betrays you as a newly single 60-year old? 

I am Marquesa Lola, with some thoughts about life from the perspective of a mature, vibrant woman. Yes, my 40-year-old relationship ended over two years ago, You know? Disloyalty and infidelity do ruin relationships. I tried to work things out with my partner, but it was obvious the unconditional trust I once felt in our marriage had vanished. Moreover, he was not too keen on doing much work to fix the relationship. In fact, he realized at one point that he did not love me anymore. He reconnected with his “friend” while I was still trying to heal from the betrayal. I did not realize at the time, but the fact that she took him back would end up being one of the best things that had happened to me in a long time. So this time, he left with her taking our dog with them. However, I realized how much peace I suddenly felt in my life. I sensed I was finally moving on. Moreover, I suddenly was the only person controlling my own life, feeling a sense of empowerment. 

I suddenly was the only person controlling my own life, feeling a sense of empowerment.” 

Now, I am less lonely than I was when I was living with him. When I wake up in the morning now, I smile, thinking I have a new chance in life. No one is around to criticize every move I make. I am now the master of my own destiny, and I have many good friends and excellent family support who fulfill my life.

But in terms of a new relationship with a new man… I’m still cautious. The real issue for me is to find ways to rethink my life and move to reorganize it in a way that it becomes a great life worth living. The happiness that I deserve. 

“I smile, thinking I have a new chance in life.”

Here are SOME TIPS I have learned that are helping me to start all over again and achieving the respect that I deserve: 

1- Learn to first respect yourself. Stand tall and confident, show your worth by developing a strong sense of self-respect that will help you fulfill your potential. You will make everyone around you see you as a person who is worthy of respect. 

2-  Acknowledge the fact that the only person who can make your life great again is you. At times, you may want to go home, stop thinking, and watch TV. This tends to isolate you and doesn’t help you move on. This means you must force yourself to get up, have a shower, get dressed, leave the house, and meet with friends. 

3- Take care of your body and your soul.  Exercise and meditation are great tools that really help you connect with the inner you. If, at times, you get lazy, make plans with a friend so you can be accountable and feel obliged to go. Healthy eating is essential at our age. Balanced meals help you keep alert and active.

4- Stop being a nice girl and set boundaries for yourself. I believe my generation was raised to think we needed to be the peacemakers at home and never make a big fuss about problems in the family. Our voices become small as voicing our opinion or disagreeing with our family is not expected. NO MORE! You don’t need to be a nice girl anymore. Learn how to say “no” or “that is not what I need right now!” Set firm boundaries for yourself. Whether it is a family member, a friend, or a coworker, you need to stop letting people walk all over you. YOU can learn to say no and let others understand that “NO, means NO! Establishing firm boundaries for yourself is a priority if you want to begin a new, more independent life.

5- Your needs are your priority. As a mother and a teacher, I relegated my own needs in favor of those of my family and my students. This is another mistake we should not make in our lives. It is your responsibility to find your voice and to have your needs met. You must make others know what your needs are, and stop assuming people know them. 

6- Get out there and get to know your surroundings if you are in a new locale. If there is a coffee shop in your area, become a regular for a while. As you get to know the servers, they will get to know you. This will encourage you to get out and meet new people in the process

“I feel I am lucky to have another chance to rebuild my life the way I chose.”

The journey is long and arduous, but not impossible. It takes determination and the support of great people around you. If you, like me, find yourself single unexpectedly, you are lucky, you have another chance to rebuild your life the way you chose. It could be the best thing that has happened to you, yet! Go for it! ¡Si se puede!!!

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