Being fifty-something means I’ve got used to my own space.
Mr P has almost always worked on rotating rosters or on jobs that take him away from home for days (sometimes weeks) at a time.
I’m not complaining. When people ask me the secret to a long marriage I tell them our forced periods apart have been our saving grace. We’ve both learnt to do our own thing. Don’t get me wrong … this is not an open marriage. Nothing like it. We just don’t stress about being apart.
Mr P has just finished a year or so in a job that kept him close. He was home every evening (often in time to cook dinner) and around enough on weekends that we could plan social happenings. It was fun while it lasted.
Mr P has started a new job and, first day, he’s been sent trucking to far-off places.
I find myself home alone with Jack Sparrow (pirate cat) and Abbie (the borrowed dog) for the first time in a long time.
Missing him? You bet.
Lost? No way. It’s “me time”, and I’ve missed that, too.
*wrings hands in anticipation*
What shall I do?
Head to the cinema solo for a chick flick?
Catch up with a girlfriend for chat/coffee/wine/chat?
Get active at the gym? Or go for a swim?
Settle in to shave some height off my towering “to read” stack?
Soak in that new bath tub I don’t seem to sink into as often as I’d hoped?
Tackle one of the craft projects beckoning from the spare room?
Start that novel?
No. I choose the guiltiest pleasure I can muster … an evening of reality TV.
Mr P loathes reality TV (in all its forms, apparently) and we simply never tune in … it’s not worth the grumbling or angst. We’ve made it an unofficial rule to not split into separate rooms to watch separate TV programs. Isn’t that the beginning of the end? If there’s nothing on the box that we’re both keen to watch, then we dont turn it on. The outcome? We don’t watch a lot of TV. We never record programs (we don’t know how) or stay home just to watch a particular broadcast. (To be honest … I haven’t actually tested that last one with Downton Abbey yet.)
So, while Mr P was in outback NSW doing this:
(don’t ask me what he’s doing … something to do with grain … or fertiliser … and bunkering)
I relaxed back into my favourite wing-back chair, feet up, watching this:
I worked my way through Grand Designs Revisited, The Block AND The Voice. All in one decadent sitting.
Kid in a candy shop.
I’ve ingested enough reality TV to see me through several dinner parties or waiting room chat sessions (now I’ll know who and what everyone’s talking about!)
Maybe I should have eased my way into it. I may have overloaded.
Like most guilty pleasures, the delight is in the rarity. And I do feel guilty (in a pleasurable kind of way).
I’ve vowed to explore something more productive/social/intellectual when Mr P next leaves me home alone.
Why? Two hours into that TV session I had an inexplicable urge to go online and buy myself a snuggie.
Now that would be the beginning of the end.
What do you choose to do when “me time” presents its pretty self?
Go on, confess … (snuggie or not).