When I was little I always dreamed about one day when I would be a Grown Up, get a job and live on my own. At the time those Grown Up years seemed so far away. Now that I am a Grown Up (of sorts), I find myself wishing that I could go back to the times when I could simply dream about those far-off times.
Not long ago I moved into my first apartment, living away from my family for the first time in my life. In theory (and from the comfort of my family home) this seemed like a great logical idea – my job was quite a drive from home, and once I started working night shift I didn’t find it practical or safe to be driving long distances at such odd hours. I got caught up in the excitement of apartment hunting and shopping for basic housekeeping/cooking/cleaning supplies (who knew that buying a broom and dustpan could be so much fun?), and I became somewhat enchanted with the idea of living on my own like a Grown Up… like I had imagined when I was a child.
So far, reality has not lived up to my dreams.
Okay, so my apartment isn’t exactly the Ritz, but it’s nice. You have to find a compromise between “cheap” and “good.” It was fun moving things in and slowly unpacking everything – some things for the first time (new dishes and suchlike). I’ll admit it – I am a girl who likes to “nest” and organize; I don’t like “cleaning” but I can “organize” until the cows come home! You adjust your dreams of having the best and the brightest of everything, and you make do with what you can afford. You make a new home.
My first night in the new apartment was an evening when I had to work. When I got back to the apartment late that night (or was is early the next morning?) I was so exhausted that I just sat on my new couch and stared around at all the boxes.
And I burst into tears.
I wasn’t prepared for the loneliness. For 23 years I had lived with amazing parents and the best brother a girl could wish for, and suddenly I didn’t have them with me all the time anymore. Sure, my parents told me that they would always be just a phone call away, but it’s not nearly the same thing. I have always been close to my twin brother (hi Nathan!), but all of a sudden I didn’t have him right there to say “good night” to every night.
I know that things will get better. And I know that I am where God wants me at this time in my life. I just wish that it wasn’t so lonely.