Solitary. Solo. Single. Unaccompanied.
To some people they are scary words. To some people they mean freedom and to most they all describe the first few weeks of being a newly single person after a divorce.
When you spend years living in the same house with someone, no matter how dysfunctional the relationship is, there is still the comfort of knowing that there is someone in the bed next to you or even in the room next to you. You can hear them talking, breathing, living. So, when you first start to experience nights alone without your kids or spouse, the silence can be deafening. Suddenly, you don’t have to worry about being quite so your spouse won’t hear you talking or texting or even breathing. And it can be an extremely humbling and frightening experience. And for me, that was when I truly grasped the fact that my almost 2 decade long relationship was truly over and it was traumatic to say the least.
I remember being so excited to move into my own place, I no longer had to explain why I was going somewhere, why I was talking to someone or even worry about being quite after a night out with the girls. And then the first night by myself happened. As I sat out on my quaint little back porch and looked over my teeny backyard and into my neighbor’s window, I started to cry. I started to feel like maybe I had made a mistake, maybe life in an unfulfilled marriage wasn’t so bad and then I heard a cricket. I heard his song of mating. See male crickets chirp for mating reasons, they sing their beautiful song in the hopes of attracting a female to mate with, while female are quiet. The females sit back in solitude and wait patiently for the perfect song of love to draw them into a web of glorious and fulfilling mating. They don’t settle for a song that doesn’t entice them. They don’t feel the need to fill their nights with random male crickets just because they fear being alone. And this got me thinking, why do we feel the need to have constant noise in our lives? Why can’t we just sit back and enjoy the sound of our own breathing while we wait for the next male to sing a song that truly attracts us so much that we feel the undeniable need to mate with them? Is this the human condition? As humans, do we feel the innate need for constant companionship out of natural human feelings or have we become so entranced with not being alone that we will deny ourselves true fulfilling happiness and jump on the first cricket to come along because we can’t enjoy and cherish our alone time? I don’t know… But I’m willing to find out.
Don’t get me wrong… I enjoy companionship as much as the next person, but I’m also learning the enjoy my own thoughts and silence and breathing. Not that there aren’t nights when I crave physical and emotional interaction with someone other than myself. But until I hear that beautiful song coming from a male that truly entices me, I’ll sit on my little back porch and enjoy the sounds of nature.