I moved to a new place.
No matter where I’ve lived so far, I’ve always felt like a guest in someone else’s home. At some point, you realize that even as a kid and you were the ruler of your little den room and half the living room, there were still parts of the apartment unit you didn’t really know. The cupboards above the stove, the bottom drawer of your dad’s desk, the things on TV past 9pm, or the inside of the storage unit where the Christmas tree lay for the better portion of the year. I suppose, as a child, these things did not interest me all that much either—it’s not as if I could understand what my dad kept in those colourful folders, or how to use the kitchen appliances.
Ever since I left for university three years ago, I’ve lived short-term in many places. This is the norm for (poor) domestic students, so I am in no way complaining. To be truthful, it’s not like I’m entirely not envious of my high school classmates who post on their Instagram stories the view from their NYC apartment, but I know that I would feel just as out of place there as I do here, in a cheap room with poor circulation and in a relatively shady part of the city. Perhaps this is a personality thing, the tendency to withdraw and feel out of place, or perhaps that is just my experience on Earth thus far.
Each time I’ve moved, even temporarily, I never stayed for long enough to carve out a real space for myself. I value personal space in the way people like a good drink, or maybe a smoke, or something similarly short-lived. Growing up having to share with younger siblings means that at (the family) home, I’m always thinking about how to best accommodate them. It’s no longer (or never was, really) my responsibility to take care of them, and they’re more than capable of communicating their own needs and wants. In my subconscious, though, I’m always thinking: There’s a better way to do that. There’s a faster, more efficient method. You don’t have to suffer and fail like I did, if you’d take my advice. But of course, they are not me, and I do trust their judgement. My mom did say once that I’d be an annoying parent. Anyway, as a result, my idea of personal space isn’t necessarily a room in a house, but just time where no one needs to speak to me and I can think/not-think by myself. Whether that’s transit time, or an excursion alone with no destination in mind really depends on the day.
Today I went to pick up a package, and stopped to get an ice coffee. It is disgusting and I feel alive now. My roommate (who is a working adult with high standards for cleanliness) sent a few nagging texts, which was kind of annoying but to be fair, it’s better than the opposite… I don’t think she detests me for any of my possibly sloppy habits (yet). But as I was walking back to the apartment, I was thinking: I wonder what it feels like to be able to do whatever I want. I suppose I’ll never be satisfied with the amount of freedom I have. Or maybe I’m talking about control.
I think it should be quite obvious that I have a tendency to want full control over everything I do, which is frankly impossible and probably detrimental to my productivity. That’s probably also why I want to live somewhere like a lighthouse.
School’s been pretty busy already! Though I am also trying to busy myself. Guess that’s it for now: a mediocre, half-assed reflection; an iced coffee; and now, back to readings.