party of one

Written by  in category  Uncategorized
July 8, 2012
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At dinner a few nights ago, I was sitting across from an older gentleman eating by himself. I casually mentioned his lack of company to a friend, who remarked that it was ‘sad’ that no one was with him. 

I immediately became defensive because I have eaten alone before, I had bought a single ticket to go see Beauty and the Beast, and I enrolled in a 12 week cooking class all by myself. Did that make me sad? 

I really wanted sushi that day, and so I went in for their lunch special (when the restaurant was relatively quiet). I would have gone to see the play with a friend – but I really wanted good seats and I didn’t think anyone wanted to spend $115 for a ticket (Merry Christmas to me!). As for the cooking class – well, I knew that it was a big financial commitment, and I would have to tough that one out myself. 

Why does society make us feel bad when we do things by ourselves? Why do we always need to be surrounded by people. 

It was only until the latter part of the year in which I realized that going out and doing things alone (in public places) wasn’t as scary as it seemed. In fact, the more I did things alone, the more it boosted my self-confidence and made me more comfortable in my own skin. It allowed me to truly enjoy my experiences, and to observe everyone else.

My most frequent observation? Everyone is always text messaging someone. I admit, I do this too (mostly when I don’t have a book or magazine with me), but why do we constantly feel the need to be in contact with someone else? Can we not be happy and live in the moment by ourselves?

I digress. Obviously I don’t think that there’s anything ‘sad’ about doing things on our own. I think it’s empowering and more people should do it. You can start with baby steps – going for a walk, ordering a meal and eating at the counter, going to the movies, taking a class by yourself…


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