I’m on “go” all the time. I’m social. I have my game face on. There’s nothing fake about it. I love being social. I love that my job is social. I just LOVE to talk actually. My job suits me and “social” is kind of my calling I guess. But, it’s not.
You see, I need down time. I need time to just sit back, relax, and reflect. I don’t need that time often, but I do need it. My job doesn’t allow that down (alone) time and I’m cool with that. I’m GREAT with that. But when do I find that alone time? That down in the depths of NON-social time? I should find it on the weekends when I’m off right? Well, I don’t.
I live in a community. It’s a beautiful community with a lot of amenities. We’ve been living this lifestyle for about 5 years now. At first, until recently, I thought I loved it. I’m social. Of course I love living around 100′s of people. Of course I love community living. Of course I love hanging out with a gazillion people at the pool every weekend. Of course I love bringing my children to the playground where they can’t even move because there are so many other children playing there. Of course I love having people drop by at will to join in our family cook outs. Of course I love being on “go” all the time, 24/7. Of course I do!
OK, I really don’t. I need downtime. I’m tired of community living. I’m tired of stepping out on my back porch to make a phone call to my mom, to pay a bill, to talk to my husband, and knowing that everyone around here knows my business. I’m tired of bumping into people in the hallways, and in the stairwells, when I’m just not in a good mood, and having to smile so they know that I’m friendly. I’m tired of socializing at a pool with a bunch of people that I don’t share much in common with and I wouldn’t chose to socialize with if it weren’t for our common location. I’m tired of being afraid to have a disagreement with my husband, or with my kids, for fear of what people might think. I’m tired of community living.
Down time. I need it. I want it. I long for it.
I loved this lifestyle for awhile. I really, really did. I love being social. I love having people around. But these people are really around too much. They aren’t just my neighbors. They feel like stalkers because they’re just…there…always.
Community (perhaps commune?) living just is not for me. I’m ready to ditch the closeness. I’m ready to drop the insta-smile on command. I’m ready to turn off my “go face” for a couple of days here and there. Because when I’m “on”, I’m ON. But quite frankly, when I’m ready to turn off, I need to turn OFF. That’s not possible here.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been not as “social” at the pool on the weekends. I just kind of keep to myself and relaxed. Apparently, I’m the community bitch now. So be it. I needed to turn off for a bit. They don’t get it. I’m cool with that. I’m ready to leave commune life. Down time, that’s what I need. Just a little, every once in awhile. DOWN TIME.
We’re looking for a quiet place. My life is busy. My job is social. I’m social. We live in a tourist town, there will always be people to talk to. That’s cool. I’m just longing for a place where I can kick back, and not be social, on the weekends when I want to.
I’m hoping the new neighbors will be social, but not too much. Get me on that? I’ll keep you posted.
In the meantime, feel free to be social with me. I like it. A lot. Just don’t expect me to be at my best during my down times. We all need them, you know?