Home Alone

30 and still living at the parents’. This in my head used to conjure up images of a loser wearing a sweat-stained white tshirt, thinned by the years, balding and sporting a protruding belly. Now, it’s a statement that applies to me, although thankfully I bear little resemblance to the above mental image, save for the belly. So I have been living at home for the past two years (gasp!! sorry, I have to do this every time I realize I’ve been back for so long). I make myself live with this fact because my parents live a short 15min drive away from work, and real estate is insanely expensive in Taipei. But I digress.

The point I’m trying to make is that it’s been a long while since I’ve tried to live on my own. Living with my family means I don’t have to worry about laundry, cleaning, cooking, grocery shopping, and all those other happy things that come with living. I do the occasional dishes and throw out the garbage, but that’s about all I’ve given to the family to trade for a spacious place to sleep, an internet connection and three square meals a day (plus a ride to work).

Recently though, my entire family left the country for two weeks, and I was left on my own. Such unfortunate fate befell me because I’m the only one in the house that lives on someone else’s payroll, and thus have limited freedom to give the middle finger to work. All is fine, because I’ve had plenty of experience living away from home, but nevertheless there was a relearning curve. But in the end it all worked out relatively well. Given a longer period of time, I would have molded the kitchen more to my liking, but alas, it’s not my house.

Throughout this whole period I was more fatigued, and generally had less time to just dick around (not literally). I come home slightly later than usual because I was without that ride to and from work. Then there’s the cooking and the subsequent cleanup. Then I’d find myself resting my fat belly because I have again overcooked thus overate. Then I’d say to myself “I’ll go work out tomorrow”. I now fully appreciate the resolve of those who can find the time and energy to work out after a full day of work and maintaining a house.

But even though I had less time for myself, I felt better mentally. I may have touched upon this before, but the cooking and cleaning and other chores are good for my mental health. It keeps my mind focused without taxing it, as my mind normally stumbles onto work-related problems if left alone. I’d also spend slightly less time on social networking sites, which is generally good for my IQ. I miss this life actually. I felt a lot more functional, and more confident that I am a being capable of surviving on my own, as I had been in the many years past. I think maybe, for the sake of my mental health, I will need to pony up and rent a place on my own. I shall sleep on it….

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