Acquiring the quiet as a habit instead of as a respite has given me a lot of unexpected perks as of late. Before, not having a plan for a Friday or Saturday night was quite unthinkable. There were just so many social obligations and I only noticed how much of my time and my life it took when I became aware of the relief that I am gifted with when I’m not out carousing with friends. I get to sleep better, and I wake up feeling better, too, which in turn translates to the following day being spent more meaningfully. Nights out before seemed pretty harmless until I realized it did not just equate to the time I’m spending outside the house, but also the time that I’m needing to recuperate and rest the day after. It’s amazing how controlling the hours I’m out gives me a substantial quality of rest, which means I’m not wasting away until the following day. This also means I get to feel better and do more things I actually want to do.
Now that things are slowly going back to normal, the invites are slowly pouring in as well, and the attendant but untalked of guilt by saying no to them is making itself known once again. It seems weird to someone who’s been so accustomed to weekend plans before the pandemic, but now I really don’t mind that people don’t have plans to meet up or even that they cancel on me. This just means I have more time to Netflix and chill, or do the things I really want to do, like write, play music, meditate, and just be by myself.
These were the things I used to probably be scared of, hence the compulsion to fill my days with fodder. Now, I know I still appreciate the invites, but when they come spontaneously and fully grasp what I just said yes to, I’m filled with more longing for the quiet night I gave up, instead of excitement at the hubbub I’m about to engage in. I know I can still make the most out of the time that I’ve committed to giving my friends, and still make it fun. But now, it’s like I’m in a relationship with my quiet, and I’m sad to have to be leaving it home alone.
All these reflections and realizations are truly amazing me. I never thought I’d come to this just because of the pandemic and the ensuing quarantines, but I’m somehow glad that it’s actually already happening. I have become more conscious of how much fun I actually have being alone, and how much better I get to perform when I give my body the rest and sleep that it should be getting. I’m also coming back to the artistic hobbies I seem to have not found the time for ever since continuous socials became a part of my life. But I’m thankful for how much more I get to value each engagement – whether it’s a date with myself or a date with other people. If anything, that’s probably one of the best things I’ve learned from this time apart from what I’ve always been used to – it’s to appreciate all the things that come to me even more vividly, as if magic was unfolding every single moment of my life.