It's Valentine's Day tomorrow ~ Heart-shaped balloons and flowers everywhere you go, and #foreveralone jokes all over social media. There's no avoiding it - I think you would have to live in a cave to genuinely forget that tomorrow is a commercialised occasion set aside to celebrate love. Still, as much as some of us might be reminded of being alone, I don't see it as necessarily a bad thing.
One thing I've been increasingly aware of is that being alone does not equate to being lonely. I love being alone, but I hate feeling lonely.
(I've been thinking about this for awhile now, but never got around to penning down my thoughts)
I like to go shopping alone, study alone and eat alone. It's not that I dislike doing these things with friends - I am just equally happy to be alone.
It's quite liberating actually, being able to go wherever you want for however long you want without feeling like you are burdening your friends by making them wait as you drag them from store to store. I love shopping with friends especially when we can give each other advice or scold each other for spending too much money (hahaha), but wandering around town alone is fun in a different way. Sometimes I get tired from shopping and go to the Library@Orchard to read for awhile. It's more difficult to do that when you're shopping with someone.
I think we all get socially exhausted sometimes (or at least I do), especially after spending so much time in social situations that require constant effort to navigate through conversations and having to keep in mind the social etiquettes to be followed. For me, spending some time alone is a great way to recharge. I like having the chance to be alone with my thoughts and do whatever I want without having to care about behaving in a social situation. Sometimes, I just want to have dinner in my room while I watch Friends.
In fact, being in the company of bad friends/acquaintances only make me feel worse about myself. I would much rather be alone than be around people who make me feel like crap. Some people you just cannot click with because let's face it, it's near impossible to be able to get along with every single person you ever meet. Some people just make you end up feeling like an unwanted outsider being neglected. After several of such encounters, I realised there's no obligation for us to turn up for every single social situation anyway, so why not just be with people who make us happy and decline the company of those who ruin your mood?
Ironically, I sometimes feel lonelier around people than when I'm alone. You see, it all boils down to who you are with. Being around "friends" might make you feel lonely despite having the physical company of people around you, while being around friends will never fail to brighten up your day and make you feel blessed and loved even after they leave. This is what keeps you from feeling lonely despite being alone - knowing that there are friends who care about you and friends you can be silly with, even if they are not physically present at the moment.
Ultimately, spending quality me-time is underrated.
Saw this article on Buzzfeed and I think I relate to this so much!
And since I reminded myself about Valentine's Day at the beginning of this entry, I realised memories of my museum outing with Mabel and Crimson on 14 Feb a few years ago are fonder than memories of Valentine's Day with him last year (lol tbh it was quite a shitty one). I guess that only goes to show how our relationship went downhill so quickly and more importantly, that you should never neglect your friends because of a relationship. I know I've made several mistakes during the relationship but one thing I am very glad I kept in mind was to never treat my friends as second-fiddle to my relationship.
Been receiving flowers and random gifts from the suite mates and I hope we all remember that Valentine's Day can be celebrated with friends too :)