So who would abruptly move someone in they’d just met, go all in and give it a go? That would be me. Of course I never planned such a thing. Who in their right mind would? Especially not given the details, which I don’t need to go into, and which are private? The details would only make others shake their head more furiously.

Though it is easy to say it was doomed from the start, there was enough that was spectacular to make a person, at least to make me, willing to give it a whirl. It was fun, it was loving, it was a slice of heaven. Until it wasn’t. And then it ended.

There was a little pain at the end, but I am not wounded. Instead I am encouraged. I am encouraged to have discovered how wonderful it was to have someone under foot…something I thought I had lost patience for.

We mobilized and worked to get my house together. He was a serious worker when he was inspired. He was helpful, and I got to feel that feeling of being in it with someone else. Two can be a nice relief when you have been one for a very long time.

And then there was all the affection, all the holding hands and smooching and sweetness. There was someone to talk to, and to listen to…someone I was allowed to care about who cared about me right back.

I’d better stop or I’ll get all mopey and sad. Because it’s gone. And I have been single long enough to know that it isn’t easy to replace all that happy that I felt.

The interesting thing is just how happy I was. And it was instantaneous. One could say that it was just all that oxytocin and other falling in love hormones at work, but I didn’t let myself swoon. There were enough potentially difficult  issues for us to overcome that I didn’t really allow myself to go in over the top. However, I did gratefully indulge in the companionship and friendship. I let in envelop me,  and whatever the hormones of cozy are, I let those take me away.

Having had this experience, never ever will I buy into the currently modern woke idea that being single is a great way to rock your bad self. It isn’t. It’s lonely. The only way to do single well is to have so many friends, hobbies and connections that it fills the void. Because there is always a void. We weren’t meant to live alone.

I can now say this unabashedly because I experienced first hand the joy that suddenly not being lonely brought to me. I experienced it without judgement. And now I am experiencing a return to being alone without should-ing all over myself.

A few well-meaning people have actually come out and said that I should just enjoy being alone until the right person comes along. Again. These people are usually married, and have spent very little time alone. People who have been alone for long periods of time get it differently. None of them tell me how I should feel. They say, “I’m sorry” and leave it at that.

I am not good at making the most of being alone because I work a lot and my work, as much as I love it, drains me. I do my best to get out in the world and do “fun” things but it takes a huge effort and energy I don’t always have. Truth is, I like to putter at home. When I was younger I had friends that I could putter alongside, but as an adult it seems that arrangement only comes with a partner.

I am also much better at making plans when I have a built in partner. It fuels my imagination to have someone by my side. I still make plans for concerts and even getaways…but having gone solo a few too many times, I am advising myself not to do it anymore. I have been to many concerts, festivals and even romantic getaways alone. Initially it was kind of cool and exhilarating, but now it has a sad quality that sneaks up on me. I think to myself, sure I’ll go alone, no problemo, and then I find myself kind of weepy or feeling heavy and sad when I am there. All the good attitude in the world just isn’t enough.

I am in need, but not a needy person. The difference between the two is that when single I get a bit desperate,  but coupled up, I am independent and enjoy being in my own head. I have enough introvert at work that I am content to have someone milling about, but I don’t need that person by my side too much. Just enough. So when I am coupled up I tend to underestimate my need for a partner. In fact, I have been known to feel suffocated. So I am in need but not needy.

I read an article in the New York times that I’d like to leave you with. It made me feel much better to realize that my hunch was correct…..I don’t know what to do about it yet, because I’ve been coming home from work just beat. But at least I know that learning to be alone is not the goal. That idea is one I am just going to put to rest forever. If you don’t believe me, read this:otters.jpeg