My adult daughter finished her teaching job in Michigan in mid-June and soon after moved out of my house.
She happily joined life with her boyfriend in Chicago. It made sense. They have been together for more than four years and in the last year, as a final testament to their undying love, they survived being long distance.
The result, of course, is I am living alone — again — and I don’t relish it.
I lived alone for several years before marriage. I lived alone after Tom died and my newly minted attorney son moved out and once again when my daughter was away at college.
I was happy when she came home to live with me after graduating. It interfered a little with dating, but she was better than me at detecting a lousy prospect. For the most part, we got along well and kept the house clean and organized.
As it turned out, her being home when I was diagnosed with cancer was a lifesaver. She called my friend and 911 for an ambulance when I woke up partially paralyzed. She was at my side during a long hospital stay, and, for weeks, she carefully nursed me as I slowly recuperated in a hospital bed on the main floor of our house.
It was a nightmare for me and shitty for her, but the months passed. I got stronger, more mobile. She had a job in education that she found challenging. In the summer, she was a nanny for a darling boy we both became fond of, and my living with her went on for two and a half years.
But like many good things, it ended. I dreaded it long before it happened. That was a waste of energy because I am managing.
Still, I have these god-awful quiet days more than I like. I work hard to keep my schedule booked, but it’s impossible sometimes. You just have to be satisfied with a book, a TV show, a movie, a walk.
I have friends who enjoy living alone in a dead-quiet house with or without pets or friendly neighbors. They can’t understand why I whine about living alone.
Well, I have news for them. When you’ve lived most of your life with people you love and who loved you back, living solo just doesn’t cut it.