Wednesday, February 22, 2012

on living alone

Have you ever had the chance to live alone?
I found this gem of an article on the Times site yesterday about how every year, more and more people are opting to live by themselves.
Now, a big part of why I live alone is because I'm not in the same city as the person I'd want to live with. And I've had wonderful roommates throughout the years. To top it off, medical school itself is already an isolating experience so quite often, I sense a resounding, lonely silence.

But here's the thing: I cherish it.

-I cherish knowing that any mess is my own.
-I cherish all of the dishes being rinsed off right away.
-I cherish crowding the tub's perimeter with my bath products.
-I cherish relying on myself for entertainment (which has led me to read a lot more)
-I cherish having people over, serving them wine in hand washed glasses, offering them cheeses from my refrigerator.
-I cherish the Robbins' Pathologic Basis of Disease textbook, always open on the dining table
-I cherish the eclectic mug collection that occupies two shelves of the pantry.
-I cherish the feminine touches: the lavender curtains, a hot pink Alexander McQueen post card in the bathroom, framed photos of orchids, the Audrey Hepburn books on my coffee table.

Maybe it's just pure selfishness, as some people commented on the article. But it's a time of life where I can be this way. My mother moved straight from her father's house to her husband's, so I'll remind myself that even my apartment's silence is a privilege. These may be the last years I can embrace the solitude. And maybe every segment of life deserves that much.
To be cherished.


  1. *sigh* I have never had a chance to live alone - you know how it is.. :)

    But that does sound like a bliss. I am so glad that my sister has a chance to ALL the things that I wished to do at that age. Living with a person you love is good too (specially when he/she helps you out with the daily chores) but that takes a toll sometimes.

    Enjoy this time of your life, Saumya!

  2. I only lived on my own once, for about 7 months - and while it was definitely lonely at first and took some getting used to, in the end I REALLY enjoyed it. Sometimes I still miss coming home to just my cats and being able to watch X Files re-runs on the Sci Fi channel until 3 AM without anyone telling me to come to bed or trying to get me to change the channel :)

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  4. I've never lived alone, but I can tell you I know I would enjoy it! I don't think it's selfish at all. I bet some people think so after reading that article because it's a woman living alone; when a man lives alone, he's a "bachelor" and no one thinks that's selfish at all. Annoying, isn't it?

    Enjoy these moments you have to yourself! Hope you're having a great week, Saumya. :)

  5. I think my wife felt the same way. Me? I was happy NOT to be alone anymore!

  6. I lived alone for about 5 years and LOVED it! Don't get me wrong, it's a nice feeling to come home to someone, especially when he has dinner ready :), but I liked having my own schedule

  7. I'm cherishing this time I get to live alone. Every mess is mine, and I get to decorate with heaps of books around my apartment. It makes me so very happy. :)

  8. I have never lived alone but I don't think I ever could as disability demands company in some form.

    Come to think of it, I don't think I have ever even had my own bedroom. Perhaps I want a study/library/office so badly because no space has truly ever been mine...

  9. I lived alone when I was at university... though actually, I'm not sure that counts because while I lived in my own room I shared a flat and kitchen with seven friends, so... no, I've never lived alone! What a strange thought.