me and my mom

I miss living with my mom.
It’s not really something I ever thought I would say. Since graduating from college in 2011, I moved back in with my mom twice. After graduation I lived with her for two years before moving out and living with my best friend for three years. I moved back in 2016 and stayed for another two years. So when I moved into my own apartment without a roommate two years ago, I was excited and knew I’d never look back. Fast forward two years, one botched pandemic, and six months of ‘safer at home’ later, I’m looking back.
I am an introvert. I enjoy my time alone; I get my energy from being alone. During the pre-pandemic days, after a week in the office surrounded by people, I basked in a weekend alone doing absolutely nothing. Having no responsibilities and not having to interact with coworkers, friends, or family was truly refreshing. Occasionally, there were back-to-back weeks where my weekend wasn’t entirely my own. Those months left me feeling drained.
I used to say I had no social life. My mom is a social butterfly with regularly scheduled events through the week and month. By comparison, I was a hermit, as my cousin so eloquently called me. But during this forced isolation, I realize that I did, in fact, have a social life. And I miss that social life.
Work is social. I love seeing my coworkers and celebrating birthdays and random Fridays with cake and non-work related conversations.
School is social. I started an MBA program last year. In January I went to Vietnam and Singapore with the most wonderful group of people from the program. Before we even left Singapore, our final destination, we were making plans to meet up regularly once we got home. I also used to have class twice a week in RTP and Elon where I had the chance to interact with classmates and my professors.
My theater nights with my best friend is social. And first Sunday family dinners are social.
Of the things I mentioned, only one is something I still do regularly–first Sunday family dinners.
Since this whole shutdown started in March, I go to two places: the grocery store and my mom’s house. July I ventured to car dealerships, but that was a necessary exception, and rode with my mom to Alabama. On the rare occasions I want/need something I can’t have delivered immediately or get from the grocery store, I order online and do curbside pickup.
Gone are the days of me wandering aimlessly through Target, or buying way too much yarn at Michael’s because it’s on sale and it feels soft. Those were things I did on my alone weekends. I don’t meet up with my friends to do paint nights, go out to dinner at restaurants, or go to the movie theater. The movie theaters are closed and paint nights just seem like a bad idea and hard to truly social distance. My classes have been virtual since April, and I’ll be doing virtual for the fall.
I spend a lot of time at home, by myself with paint by numbers and Netflix. I don’t have a pet, and I can’t seem to keep any plants alive. I just keep thinking if I were living with my mom right now, I’d have all the social interaction I need/want.
I’m an introvert, but I’m human. And humans are social creatures that need social interaction regardless of introverted or extroverted leanings.
So, yeah, I miss living with my mom.

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