Friday, April 26, 2013

from last summer

Note: I just found this in my drafts. I never posted it last summer. It's still fairly raw and unedited, but I kind of like looking back to about a year ago and seeing how I really, genuinely felt.

This summer, I have spent a lot of time alone.
Not that I don't have great friends, not that I haven't done wonderful things, and not that I didn't have great roommates.
I just was a little less busy and spent a little more time by myself.

There is something very... poignant about spending time alone. 
I used to always watch a movie or turn on music when I was by myself.
That's not really being alone. 
There is a beauty in being alone with your thoughts. 
I'm not sure this post is making sense at all.
Sometimes, I write things like they're a final draft and I try too hard. I need to remember to just get all the words and thoughts out on the page, then edit. 
(English 2010. woot.)

Really though, music brings feelings and thoughts and memories.
The kind of music we listen to enhances or destroys our experiences.
Sometimes, I think it is better to turn the music off and let your thoughts be guided by just you and not by outside media.
I'm learning a lot about feeling the spirit and how the Holy Ghost speaks to me. And I'm learning a lot about where my thoughts tend to go when I'm not so busy that I don't have time to think. (Boys. The answer is boys or design, but mostly boys.)
I like listening to music while I design or edit pictures, but sometimes it's nice to work in silence and to let the beauty of the art just speak and not be directed by a mood that the music is putting me in. (Side note: I edited pictures while watching a particularly creepy episode of Psych once... not my best work.)

I have had a hard time being okay being alone. Like there is this sick sense of guilt when I'm by myself with nothing to do on a Friday or Saturday night. It's the weekend, I should be enjoying it, I should be out playing with friends, right? I've learned to be okay on my own. I get to do what I want. I get to relax and be myself and discover myself without the pressures of impressing people.

I also find that the more I learn to be okay with myself by myself, the more I like other people. The more I'm okay with showing up to things by myself and joining a group. Sometimes that's hard.

I'm learning how to be confident in who I am. To know that I am okay. I don't need other people.

And none of this means that I don't want other people. I love being social, I enjoy being with my friends, and I really do want to find someone to share all of my life with. I don't want to be alone forever, but I'm pretty sure there are still times in marriage when you have to be by yourself to an extent. And how can you be happy with someone else if you aren't happy by yourself?

I've always thought I would make a good missionary because you constantly have a companion, you don't do anything alone. Secretly, I'm kind of shy by myself. I guess I should say I can be shy. I tend to be. When I'm with someone else, I'm as outspoken as I want to be. Having a wingman does great things for my self-esteem. I'm the same way with singing. I get super nervous for solos, but make it a duet, trio, or back me up with a choir and I'm good to go.

I want to learn how to be confident without a wingman. I want to know how to be myself, by myself. I'm starting to learn. But this summer has been very good. I've learned how to be alone, but not lonely. Turns out, I enjoy my own company. Which in turn, gives me the confidence that someone else could also enjoy my company.
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