HOME ALONE – BY ELLIN CURLEY

My husband, Tom, left on a three-day trip this morning. I’ve been dreading his departure. I’ve been dreading being alone.

Why?

Tom and I spend most days ‘doing our own thing’. Even when we’re in the house together, we’re often in different rooms doing different things. Some days, Tom goes to the boat and doesn’t come home until dinner time. In either case, we often don’t actually hang out together until the evening.

So why does the house feel different today? Why do I feel a little bit lonely and out of sorts? Why do I feel something is missing? Because it is. My other half, my soul mate isn’t going to be with me for several days.

I have to confess. I’ve only lived alone for six months in my entire life. That was when I was 23 and in law school. Since then, I’ve been married or living with children in between marriages. I’m not used to being alone.

I think for me, it’s the idea of being alone that freaks me out. It’s not that I go crazy when I’m by myself. I’m actually pretty good at keeping busy. But I’m not confident in my self-sufficiency. It’s similar to my anxiety about having to drive to the airport alone. I know I can do it and have done it many times. But I’ve also gotten lost in the airport on and every time I go, I get nervous and uncomfortable.

Another issue is that I’m technologically challenged. So I worry what will happen if the remote goes on the fritz or my phone goes wonky, or the freezer drawer gets stuck again. Tom is the one who fixes those types of problems for me (as well as a myriad of computer issues I can’t handle on my own!) In that area I am truly helpless. So that actually is a real issue for me.

But other than facing something broken that I can’t fix, I’m fine when I’m on my own. It’s just that I’m used to having someone else around. That is my comfort zone. I am definitely a fish out of water when facing three days alone in my house.

My dogs are great company, as is MSNBC. I’m reading a good mystery. I have our nighttime talk shows to keep me occupied late at night. I’ll be seeing friends, running errands and talking to Tom on the phone.

But through it all, I’ll have an empty feeling just knowing that Tom is not nearby. I think that’s called love. So I guess I’ll have my love to keep me warm until Tom gets home!

12 thoughts on “HOME ALONE – BY ELLIN CURLEY

  1. I feel homesick whenever my husband is away. My being at home doesn’t seem to matter in the slightest. I go bonkers cleaning before he gets home because I want him to feel so happy when he walks in the door. The irony is that I know that he couldn’t care less about that, but it’s important to me when I come home so I feel like I need to do the same. I totally get it. Stock up on all those movies he rolls his eyes about and have a Ellin Moviethon. Or drink a lot. 😉 Just teasing! (Unless that’s your thing and then do whatever you gotta do but just don’t drive, too.). Hugs! Jo

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    • You used a great phrase: “I feel homesick whenever my husband is away!” That’s like the quote : Home is where my husband is.” It’s so true. My house has a certain feel to it when my husband and my two dogs are there. It has nothing to do with actually interacting with them. It’s a vibe or ambiance, or maybe it’s all psychological. We felt odd for weeks after one of our dogs died. The house just didn’t feel right. That’s why the concept of “home” is different than “house”.

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      • Girl – don’t even get me started on losing the dog. For years I would hear nails clicking on the hardwood and turn to look for her. It only took a moment to remember that she was gone, but my heart broke every time. We ended up getting two others after that, and now I’m twice as stressed at the idea of losing one! At least you know that your man is coming back, and you can keep busy by tossing out all those holey old t-shirts, socks and underoos guys hoard like they are going up in value. Or maybe that’s just here??? 😉

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          • It takes times, but I always end up throwing myself under the bus. Why would I ever do that you ask? Well, I’ll tell you Marilyn. It’s because apparently I’m a total bonehead. I will mention it out of the blue a year or more down the road. He would have never noticed otherwise. And is he still mad that far down the road? Of course he is because he thought he had the ratty top the whole time! It’s like it’s my first day at marriage school. But the armpit hole shirts have exited the building, so at least there’s that! 😉

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  2. I’m always a little lonesome when Garry’s away. I’m good for the first 24, then not as good the next and by day three, I’m very ready for him to come home. We are so used to being together, it feels so strange when we are not.

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    • I kept timing myself while Tom was away. Counting how long I had made it so far without him and how much time left till he came home. Very weird for a grownup.

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