When I was much younger, I used to dread going out alone: being alone at a movie, or seeing a show, or going to dinner, or traveling to another place. I honestly think it stemmed from the deep fear of being lonely, and maybe a fear of not being good enough. So I always kept occupied with other people.
I won't say that I don't fear those things anymore. Those innate fears are real, and to not honor that they exist is to not honor our humanity. But this is a process that has taken a lot of time to work through. I'm working through it.
Moving away and living alone for the last 5 years has taught me to enjoy my own company. As an extrovert, it was difficult, but I learned new skills in how to appreciate myself. I learned a lot about what I liked, what I really didn't like. Did I ever truly like something just because someone else liked it? Being alone cuts that out really quickly.
It made me appreciate and cherish every single interaction I had with others and helped me transition from a speaker to an observer. People watching is now one of my favorite things. Understanding others' humanity and why people do what they do is humbling and fascinating. Listen to people. You'll learn a lot more about the world if you just give them a minute.
So if you see me at a table alone, come and sit with me, because the extrovert in me is raring to chat with you. But if you don't, just know that I'm doing well on my own. 😁
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