23 Stages Of Being Home Alone For The Weekend, From Pants-Free Joy To Existential Sadness
As we get deep into the summer travel season, many of us are confronted with a unique household conundrum: what to do when your roommate or significant other goes out of town, leaving you home alone for the weekend. A world apart from living alone (or living with a hated Craiglist roommate who turned out to be "into" being late with rent and eating peanut butter while on the toilet), spending a weekend home alone when you live with someone whom you like is a mixed blessing. On one hand, who doesn't want a little more space, a little extra breathing room, a little less judgment about the way you dip your chicken nuggets in Thousand Island dressing?
But on the other, spending the weekend by yourself when you're used to always having someone you can talk to, count on, and wake up in the middle of the night if you think someone is trying to break in, can be a challenge — one that might take your plans for a fun productive weekend, and run them through a weird filter of rudderlessness until it's Sunday night and you realize that you've been throwing your empty burrito wrappings almost, but not quite, into the trash can...for three days.
So if you're able to spend a weekend in an empty apartment without falling into the occasional existential black hole or going mad with power, good for you. But for everyone else, may I please present the 23 emotional stages of hanging around the house by yourself for the weekend.
1. Say Goodbye To Your Friend
I can't believe you're going away all weekend! What will I do without you? Who will I laugh with? Who will I confide in? Who will shame me into doing my laundry? I wish you didn't have to go! Make sure to text me every 30 seconds and let me know what you're doing!
2. Really Say Goodbye To Your Friend
No, really, I'll miss you! But that said, you should get on your way, right? No, I'm not trying to push you out the door or anything! I'm just saying, if you don't arrive an hour early for your bus, as suggested by your ticket, you may not get on! Or have to sit next to the bathroom. Almost as bad, right? Plus, I hear the bus station has great soft pretzels, you could probably check those out if you have some extra down time. Bye!!
Oh god, it feels even better than I dared dream it would.
4. Say Goodbye To Your Pants
For crimes against my upper thigh area, you are banished to this spot behind the couch for the next 72 hours, so that you may think about what you've done. May God have mercy on your overpriced denim soul!
5. Listen To Music Your Roommate Hates
Yeah, who has the musical taste of "a sentient trash bag filled with spoiled hoagies" now, Paula?
6. Do Everything Your Roommate Hates
Oh, hello, weird-smelling food, living room blanket forts, and sci-fi movies about evil prehistoric sharks that fight evil prehistoric sturgeon. We have a lot of catching up to do.
7. Be The Queen Of The Castle
I am living my best life now.
8. Sleep Someplace Weird
I wonder what it's like to sleep on our living room futon? Then I could watch Netflix in bed on the big screen, instead of on a tiny computer screen that I am afraid of rolling over onto while I sleep. Why not? The world is now, for the first time, a wide-open vista where anything is possible, just like my college commencement speaker said.
9. What Was That Sound?!
I mean, probably nothing. Just the house settling, right? I'm sure. A healthy house creaks! I think that was one of my mom's sayings? Or maybe I'm thinking of that thing she used to say about getting adequate fiber.
10. No, Seriously, What Was That Sound?!?
Yes, houses may creak when they settle, but don't really thud, right? That was definitely a thud. I'm not saying that thud was the ghosts of a family who were murdered in this house one hundred years ago today and are back to seek blood vengeance...but I am hard pressed for any better explanations. I'm just gonna go sleep in my room, with all the lights on, for fun. You know, endless potential! Vistas! Horizons! Etc!
11. Feel Ready To Rock
Oh man, what was I thinking last night? I can't believe that I got so nervous over a few random creaks that I left all these lights on and also tried to fashion my Hitachi Magic Wand into a crude weapon to ward off intruders. That was crazy.
But I'm feeling great now. The world is my oyster! How should I start the day? Pantsless breakfast? Pantsless TV? You know what? I'm gonna do all that, PLUS try some weird face masks, masturbate, read a little...anything I want! Today is about me, and exploring myself, and also maybe not wearing a bra.
12. Realize You Forgot To Make Any Other Plans
Wow, I thought that would take all day, but it actually only took about 45 minutes. I guess I should have thought to make some other plans with some other people this weekend — my roomie and I just usually figure out our weekends together, so it kinda slipped my mind. Well, I'm sure if I just text a few people now...
13. Realize Everyone Else Is Busy
What do you mean, you're all busy? I'm sorry, I thought this was America, a place where people made freewheeling, last-second plans, not some cursed wasteland where everyone plans things a week in advance! Excuse me!
14. Go Out With Your Third-String Friends
Screw you, real friends with prior plans! I'm sure I'll have just as good a time going out with this one girl who was in my French study group in college and her cousin who is visiting from out of town. Maybe more, in fact! Parlez-vous "true and enduring friendship"?
15. Come Home Early In Defeat
Could that girl from my French study group really not have kept her cousin from getting into a screaming fight with that bartender about the Affordable Care Act and Frozen? I'll never be able to show my face in that Tex-Mex casual dining establishment ever again. Sigh.
Well, anyway, it's a perfectly respectable time to turn in. I'll get up really early, jog, go to the farmer's market and all that other cute Pinterest life balance stuff. Still one day of the weekend left! World remains oyster! Etc!
16. Watch TV For Three More Hours
So I won't get up early after all! Who cares! Who's counting! This is my time to relax, and really do me. Who is me, anyway? What true wishes and dreams exist within my heart? What do I really want out of life? I know the best way to figure that out — I'll start a major closet remodeling project at one in the morning on a Saturday!
17. Clean Out Your Closet At 1 A.M.
You know, this is really not filling the void in my soul like I thought it would. Also, god, when did I buy so many wrap dresses?
18. Feel Fine! Fine, I Tell You!
I am relaxed and cool and just DOING VERY WELL thank you for your concern.
19. Not Joking Around, What Was That??!
This night, I am leaving all the lights on with ZERO SHAME. Come at me, ghost-murderers! Oh my god, please don't actually come at me, ghost-murderers. I have so much to give and so much more of my best life to live. And now I also have to put all these stupid clothes back in my closet, so there's also that.
20. Feel Genuinely Great!
You know, it took much longer than I would have liked to adjust to it, but I finally feel good being alone here! I don't have to be so freaked out by the idea of spending time by myself, or so terrified that all creaky noises in my house are being made by ghosts, ax murderers, or eerie porcelain dolls that have come to terrifying life. I can do things on my own, on my own terms, and be perfectly happy that way.
21. Cook What You Want
Ah, delicious! And just for me!
22. Engage In Relaxing Recreation
I am really seriously getting the hang of this. I am enjoying the peace and quiet, and the space to do my own thing, and the freedom to not have to fit my schedule in around anyone else, and —
23. Your Roommate Is Home!
Thank god you're home. Stuff was getting really weird there for a minute. Uh, I'll clean up that blanket fort later.
Images: Hughes Entertainment, Giphy (23)