Family vacation or: How I Couldn’t Wait to be Alone

Sitting at Tom's Restaurant, made famous because of Seinfeld.
Sitting at Tom’s Restaurant in New York City, made famous because of Seinfeld.

For Thanksgiving, my family and I went to Pennsylvania to visit other family and then we hopped over briefly to New York City. The trip lasted from Tuesday night until late Sunday night. In Pennsylvania, we stayed at my grandparents’ house — all six of us, one a toddler and the other a baby (my parents stayed in a hotel).

Maybe this isn’t exclusively an introverted feeling or thought process, but my god, by Sunday morning, the only image I had was of me, alone in my dark room with my laptop sitting in my underwear with the door locked. I had a great time on vacation with said family, but I was absolutely craving my solitude and downtime.

Being at somebody else’s house, sleeping on a couch, sharing a bathroom with six other people, always having someone there; it makes you feel claustrophobic after a while. You just want to get away and I had that sentiment.

After I got home, put everything away, I closed my door and melted into my mattress for the next three hours. It was like I was going through fucking social detox; it was goddamn glorious is what I’m saying.

Somewhat related, but I’ve had this awareness now for a while that I’m a bit of a control freak. I don’t know if that’s an introvert quirk or I’m-a-weirdo quirk, but, especially when I’m going to an unfamiliar place or diving into an unfamiliar situation, I like to be in control; if things go according to plan or shit hits the fan, at least I can shoulder that. When the latter occurs under the auspices of someone else, it’s irksome.

With that said, there are worse occurrences than the proverbial shit hitting the fan, so long as the shit hitting the fan isn’t correlated to a potentially life-threatening situation. Otherwise, it does create a bit of spontaneity that snaps me out of my incessant need to control ever potentiality; there’s a thrill to bullshiting your way through a fuck-up. I don’t mean that in terms of being harmfully deceiving, but the general concept is that most of us have no idea what the fuck we’re doing – and there are two people in life: those that can pretend to know what they’re doing and those that can’t.

I believe for an introvert, such as myself, social interaction is analogous to a shot of Five-Hour Energy. There’s a rush to social interaction, most specifically when you hit a stride with someone on an intellectual level (whether serious or humorous); it’s not something we actively seek to avoid, as we are not antisocial beings. However, after a while, even amidst stimulating conversation, there comes a time where aloneness becomes a necessity to recoup one’s self. Many I’ve seen refer to social interaction as “draining” and I believe that to be accurate and correlated to the more people involved in the interaction and the duration therein.

Basically, it’s the proverbial love-hate relationship.


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