By Katie Moosbrugger
Many moons ago (at least it feels that way) before I was married with kids, my husband (then boyfriend) and I – and another couple – rented a cabin for the weekend. And as typical mid-twenty-somethings would do, we were having fun, carrying on and cutting loose. At some point – and I don’t remember why – we had to knock on the door of the cabin next to us. To my surprise a woman (probably in her mid-to-late 40s) answered to help with whatever we needed. I remember peeking in her cabin and seeing a blanket on the couch (where she obviously got up from), and next to the couch was a book and a glass of wine. It was apparent she was staying there alone. It was late in the evening and she was by herself. My first thoughts were, “How strange…Why would she want to hang out by herself in this cabin? She must be so bored…Where is her husband and where are her kids…I feel so bad for her!”
Of course, just I shouldn’t have assumed she had a husband or kids. Of course I shouldn’t have assumed she was alone because of a sad reason. Yet at that time, I couldn’t help thinking “How odd!”
But that was 16 years ago. That was 12 pre-maternal years ago. If I knocked on that door today, I wouldn’t find it odd at all. In fact, I’d find it pretty terrific.
Fast forward a few years later from my previous story. My soon-to-be-husband and I were making plans to attend the wedding of the couple mentioned above. Most of our friends attending the wedding were single and dating, except for our married friends R & L who already had a toddler and a baby. Before we all left for the wedding weekend, I called L to see if she wanted to take a “spa” day with the girls. To my surprise I found out that L wanted time alone and was already at the wedding location – one night early – all by herself. And once again I had thought at the time, “How odd!”
Thinking back, if this scenario happened today, I would be so jealous of my friend L! Time alone! For a whole night! Can you imagine?
Although I don’t know the reasons why the lady from my first story was alone in the cabin (I am guessing she was simply seeking alone time), I do know that my friend L was a tired new mom with an understanding husband who gave her the gift of peace and quiet for that one night. And while I credit (and envy) both ladies for having the courage to take advantage of such an opportunity, I don’t know if I would have the guts to do the same.
So that got me thinking of other things I’ve seen grown women do by themselves – things that I’m not so sure I could muster the courage to do. Like dine alone at a fancy restaurant. Or go to the movies by myself. Or go camping and hiking alone. Or go skiing or golfing alone. Or take an entire vacation alone (not just one night – like several nights). I think all these things are perfectly fine to do alone (assuming you’re safe) but I’m not so sure I ever could or will.
What about you? Have you – or would you – do any of those activities by yourself? Are there other similar things you’ve done by yourself that have amazed your friends? Do you think it’s odd to do these things alone, or do you think it’s pretty awesome?