I recently read about an Italian gentleman who for years lived on an island by himself. A dramatic move but I get it-that inner desire to sometimes be alone- I mean all alone.
Think about it. No obligations to others, no sitting in traffic, no waiting in long lines, no more dealing with rude people, or going to that family get-together where you have to see that one person and act all nice. Of course, after a while it may get a lonely, maybe even a little scary when you realize just how far away the nearest urgent care and Starbucks are but other than that...ah peace and quiet.
I have been a loner pretty much as long as I can remember.
I love being by myself and grew up with parents who represented both ends of the spectrum. My dad is a true introvert and has found solace in both his work and his rose garden. He hates parties, and most social gatherings except for a small group of friends and his rose meetings while my mother on the other hand is a huge extrovert. When she goes to church, if I ever want to leave with her, I tell her to look straight ahead otherwise we will never leave. Within two seconds, someone else always spots and she gets into long conversations.
People often assume that I am social because I enjoy talking to people, and was always the one who loved to dance at clubs, sometimes by myself, till closing. But what has set me a part from other true extroverts, is the way I renew my energy..I believe the main difference between an introvert and an extrovert comes from a description I read a few years back ....Unfortunately, I do not
recall the source but it explains that an extrovert recharges and gets his/her energy by being with others (a clue may be someone who often says.."I gotta get out and hang out with some buddies") while an introvert reclaims his/her energy by being alone. Signs of introverts may be nappers who need to get away, or anyone who may "disappear" for a few hours or days to unwind.
So while I am easily able to spend a weekend with a few friends, you will no doubt see me during that time, go off by myself and retreat by going on a five hour walk (I literarily did that while they all were sleeping in) or grab a cup of coffee and going site seeing by myself while my friend got ready (I did that in Las Vegas).
Growing up, I remember the moment very clearly when I understood that I loved being alone. I was about six and staying at my grandmother's home in Hilo Hawaii. She had just made my favorite brownies. Grandma was a soft spoken gentle lady. She loved to cook and her secret ingredient was using condensed milk which made the best homemade brownies and shortbread cookies. Grandma also had a side room that I loved to plan in. Because she loved to sew, the room was filled with balls of yarn, crochet needles and round glistening balls that I liked to use to make puppets.
One day, I just settled in that room with my brownie and was just about to watch Spiderman, one of my favorite cartoons when the neighbor's kids knocked on my door. We had played the day before but I wanted to stay by myself. I then went out to look at my grandmother who by the look on my face pretty much got the picture that I wanted to stay inside and be alone.
My grandmother then proceeded to inform the little girl that I was not feeling well. Back to my brownie and Spiderman, I rejoiced with absolute glee.