It was early and Eighty was scratching at the door, so I got up to let her out. Since the tile floor is very cold these December mornings, I pulled on my warm wooly socks, the red and yellow striped ones. Still chilly, I slipped on my orange San Diego sweatshirt over my green flowered pajamas (which are extra baggy since I lost weight last year). I caught a glimpse of the entire ensemble reflected in the patio door, topped off by a raging case of bed head. My hair was flattened on one side and the other side looked like I’d poked my finger in a light socket. It provided the best laugh I would have all day and the sun wasn’t even up yet. Such are the hazards of living alone. There is no one to tell you when you look ridiculous.
I have almost no sense of smell left, so I also need someone to tell me if I smell bad or there is a rotten potato in the pantry. My friends are too kind to do that. There is no one to say, “You go back to bed, I’ll walk the dog this morning.” No one to climb the ladder in the middle of the night to silence the chirping smoke alarm. It takes extra planning to get a ride to the airport or to the dealership when when my car needs servicing.
Still, I’m never lonely. I’m easily entertained. My TV and iPad time is unfettered and unrestricted and guilt free. If I’m awake in the middle of the night I can vacuum or play my flute without annoying anyone. I can change into my pajamas at four o’clock in the afternoon without apologies or explanations. If what I really want for supper is a bowl of Cherrios, I have it, and no one points out that I’ve had Cherrios for supper three times this week. And there’s no one to tell me that I look ridiculous. Such are the blessings of living alone.
Coming of Age by Rosemary Rawson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.