Friday, November 20, 2009

Home Alone . . . but not like in the movie

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By Lonnie Cruse

Are you someone who doesn't like the sounds of silence? Someone who has to have people around or music blasting from the stereo or the television flashing picture after picture or whatever you use to keep you company?

Okay, I confess that after my last chick flew the nest, headed off to kindergarten lo those many years ago, I usually turned on Captain Kangaroo every morning . . . just for the noise, for the company. And for the memories. I eventually outgrew the Captain.

Today we live in a world of constant noise and activity. Sometimes we need a break. We need to be home . . . alone. Without people, without noise, without anything but ourselves and the sounds of silence. Time to think. Time to plan. Time to find out where we are. And more importantly, time to find out where we're going.

When we moved into the modern age with all the modern appliances, somewhere back in the thirties or forties, we lost our aloneness, maybe forever. Young people today probably don't even know what that is. We're constantly with others either in person, on the cell phone, or by watching/listening to the television/radio. We don't even seem to be able to shop at the local grocery store without chatting on the cell phone to someone. It's hard for us to to think, much less plan. Drivers who chat on cell phone are so numerous and so distracted from simply thinking, thus causing accidents, that states everywhere are passing laws against it. That should tell us something. We can't even tolerate being alone in the car.

Women who stayed home back in the day had that alone time, at least when their children were in school. So did the men, if they worked on a farm or other outdoor jobs. We've lost a lot of that alone time with this brand new world. That's not always a good thing.

We need time to sit down and be with ourselves. By ourselves. Time to ask ourselves tough questions. Where am I going? What's next in my life? Where do I want to be in the next five years? In ten years? Because those days will be here before we know it, whether we plan for them or not.

And we need time to find ourselves. We can get swept up into the current of life and wind up in places we never wanted nor planned to be. And it happens if we don't take time alone.

Today's world is busier than ever. Noise and activity are a constant fact of life. When is the last time you took some time for yourself? It's not selfish. Really it isn't. It's necessary so you can focus, make some decisions, and ultimately wind up where you want to be, not just where life pushed you. The clock is ticking!


Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I'm finding it harder now to write without some kind of stimulation going on in the house. I think that's because I've adapted SO much to having kids in the house while writing! Nice post, Lonnie. I'm tweeting this.

Mystery Writing is Murder

Sandra Parshall said...

After I steopped working as a newspaper reporter, I had trouble writing at home -- too quiet! Gradually I grew used to it, and now I hate any kind of noise around me when I'm writing. I like a quiet house. Our cats, having grown up in peace and quiet (except for the tap-tap-tapping of Mom's computer keys), get totally freaked out by loud noises. We're all so boring! Not exactly party types. :-)

Lonnie Cruse said...

Interesting thought, ladies! Thanks!

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