On Traveling Alone

I’m sitting in the Baltimore airport waiting for my flight home.  I came here for a few days because I wanted to take some time away from my life, more or less, and this was a great place to come.  I know a few people here – people I’ve met online and gotten close to in the last few months and years but never actually had the opportunity to meet in person.  B’more is close, it’s a city with a lot to do, and it was pretty easy to decide to come here, even if it was my second choice.

Also, traveler’s note – it’s like 800 degrees in every taxi and in this airport right now.  I understand it was about 40 degrees warmer a couple days ago, but cut it out with the overcompensation.  Also, BWI security checkpoints suck.  It’s like merging onto the Bay Bridge.  There’s like three entrances that all lead to the same desk.  Not sure why that is.  Perhaps the idea is to frustrate the bad guys into giving up.  It seems an effective plan.  I know I’m kinda worked up about it.  Leave me alone!!!

So, anyway, on traveling alone.  A friend told me that going on vacation by yourself can be a liberating experience, and I don’t know if I would go that far, but it definitely has its perks.  I did what I wanted.  I saw things I wanted to see.  I wanted to see Oriole Park, so I went and saw it.  If I wanted to stay in my room, I stayed in my room.  However, it would’ve been nice at times to have someone with me to enjoy a new city.  Everywhere I went I was surrounded by people and I know my friends would’ve come along had I asked, but I like being by myself, for the most part, and when I’m with people, the other extreme is true.

This fact reared its ugly head at one point after some drinks, and I did something I regret.  Thankfully it isn’t a problem, but it was a learning experience.  I’m an affectionate drunk, and I guess I think everyone else is, too.  I just don’t know how to be, and lately I decide to be who I think I’d like to be.  That’s not me, and I think everyone knows that.  I get a lot of compliments from a lot of people and I appreciate every single one, but sometimes I feel like they ring hollow, like if I’m so wonderful then why do you look over my shoulder at someone else?

I know I have issues.  I know I have baggage.  That’s what my life became almost 8 months ago.  I don’t know why I can’t just live with myself as is.  I try too hard.  I’m not trying anymore.  Someone else reminded me to focus on what will surely be a difficult holiday season and I’m going to try and do that.

All that being said, I hope to make these sort of trips a regular thing, maybe a couple times a year.  There are a lot of people I want to meet and visit with and I have the means by which to do so.  I’ve learned a bit about myself on this trip and that should make the next one better.

Special thanks to Liz, Jill, Jess, Kate, Nick, Brad, Chris, and everyone else for making time with me this weekend.  I can’t wait to get back.

3 comments

  1. Every single widow/er I’ve met, without exception, spends at least some time in the first year after their spouse’s death figuring out who they are. Every single one. Whether it’s because you got married really young and don’t know who you are as an adult, or because you don’t know how to be you when you’re so freakin’ sad, there will be times you just don’t have it figured out. And you hope, really hard, that during those times, you don’t screw up too badly.

  2. Jenn says:

    I’m so proud of you.

  3. Geek Shui says:

    You’re doing your thing. It isn’t the thing you were doing 8 months ago, and it probably isn’t the thing you’ll be doing 8 months from now. In any case, though, they all, cumulatively, constitute your thing. As long as we don’t try to predefine how things should be, things tend to work themselves out. The universe is cool like that.

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