Lately it has become more evident to me how much I appreciate having my own privacy and space.
My girlfriend — lets call her Emma — and I have been going through the house buying process and it has left us technically homeless. I say “technically” quite loosely; fortunately we’ve had a roof over heads as Emma’s parents have let us live with them temporarily. We’re only here until the purchase completes and the house is ready for us to move in. It’s been on going now for quite a few month. This has meant though that we’re living with other people and it has been difficult to find an area where each of us can sit alone. Not together, Emma and I, but separately.
Emmas parents aren’t without issue (that’s another post altogether), but I still I cannot blame them. They both obviously enjoy our company, often going out of the way to talk to us, and taking interest in what is going on with our day-to-day lives. They’re being accommodating to most our needs while we’re here, helping us with anything we need or want to make our stay more comfortable.
That’s just how they make people feel welcome in their home.
Before we made the move to Emmas parents, we had spent a few years living together, and we agreed that we would split our time so we can each enjoy our own space and not live in each others pockets. It was good. It worked so well that I think our relationship has been incredibly solid in part because of that. As much as we love spending time together, we’re both independent people and appreciate that having our own space is good for our well being. Of course, not everyone will agree, but it works for us.
That time at home was always the place where I could guarantee I could get my space if I needed it. But it’s not just living here, at Emmas parents, that have made me take on this realisation, it’s a number of other things as well.
Even on my daily commute to work, I’ve found that more often than not when I’m just scrolling through my phone to pass the time that the person sat next to me, whoever it is, will often sit and look at what I’m doing. I’ve caught quite a few people doing it. What gives? Why do people feel the need to do this? It might not be much, and it’s not the most relaxing environment but if I want to scroll through my newsfeeds without some lady, smelling like she’s showered in cheap perfume, gawping at my phone, I should be able to. But, in all fairness, even if people didn’t look over my shoulders, I still wouldn’t be able to relax and enjoy my own headspace.
At work I’m constantly busy and my job requires me to talk to people often and manage my team. I love everyone I work with but work will never be an opportunity to get that much needed space on my own. But that is a given, right?
When it comes to family and friends, I love them dearly and enjoy any moment I get to spend with them. However, every event with either — or both — of those groups is social based. Going for food, for drinks, coffee, to the cinema, concerts or anywhere else, no matter who with, is not that private space I need. There will always be people around, and as any introvert will tell you; social situations take up a lot of energy, and introverts need space away from everything to be able to recharge.
I knew enjoyed it, I just didn’t know how much I appreciated it and I’m craving that personal space again.