I write: happy loner life on the top of the page then cover it up with an ink circle curly q tattoo. I'm sitting outside at a table at a local bar, alone. I'm sipping a ginger cocktail watching my quickly changing neighborhood go by. I'm happy, relaxed and content. I love being in the company of my own mind. Solace gives me great comfort. Solace is reminiscent of being a device plugged into it's charger. Solitude energizes me.
The inverse drains me. Interaction with several people at the same time leaves me feeling depleted. I joke around that I like books way more than people (yes, I still read paper books). I never tire of turning pages that reveal more and more about the journey within them. I've curated a world where spend more time being authentic and less time having to code switch(look it up, if you don't know what that means). The landscape society has tended to, sprouted a people who cling to ways of being taught to us in childhood. They cling as if life itself depends on it. There are rules of engagement that are deemed respectable, correct. Typically, that roughly translates into: shut up and be pretty. It creates too much stress for me having to gauge how to operate with the right amount of respectability and pedigree. As someone who makes up her own rules, time spent with strangers is not always fun.
Because I am a performer, I have to interact with a large number of people. I often quietly listen to the things that strangers say. I wonder if people think about the ways in which they impose their opinions onto others. A Christian zealot talks excitedly expecting me to share in her enthusiasm for the Bible. A random white person compliments me on being so well spoken. After I have stripped onstage, of course that means I want to hear your thoughts on my body! I'm lying. I do not want to hear about what you think about my body. I hear the worry of some family members as I share stories of my latest travel adventures. A lover cycles through the predictable phases: I don't care what you do. I want to be at every show. I'm tired do I have to go to the show? Can you not do what you do? OK, honestly, I do not like what you do but you love it so I put up with you doing what you do. People never seem to tire of believing that their opinion is factual.
Alone, I have my thoughts or the lack there of depending on what I choose. I may make up silly songs that only entertain me. I act spontaneously on my whims & go. I read and read and learn and read. I'm content. There's no committee to check in with. If not alone then I prefer the company of one or two people. There's a thing about actual connection and communication that I prefer. Large groups don't seem to allow for this. By my own design, I exist mostly in a world of people playing by their own rules. Even an introvert like me likes their company. I'm inspired and happy to have connections like this. They dare to stare in the face, everything that someone ELSE ever told them they believe in the face and stick their tongues out at it all. Unmitigated joy is what I derive from these spirits. I can relax and experience joy in their presence.
Still, the ultimate sense of ease for me is when I fly solo. Whether going to have a meal, traveling across the world or catching a show, alone is my preferred way to go. Society has too many people bound and tied. It stresses a weirdo like me out to be around normal people. I've learned how. I can do it. I do it when I need to. It's not like I can't enjoy the company of people. I do, just in small doses at a time.
If you know someone that is sparingly available for large social outings, they may be a loner. If I can't release my shoulders and speak without a filter, I'm likely feeling awkward inside. It's not personal at all. My alone time is an essential piece to my peace. Much in the same way extroverts are fed by being the center of attention, the inverse is true for the introvert loners of the world. Surely, there is an extrovert that lives inside me but she only comes out when I'm on stage. After the show she goes home alone. Loners of the world, I get you because I am you.