I Guess It IS Possible for Me to Live with Another Person
In this case, people.
My parents' house (and about a dozen neighboring houses) lost power early Wednesday morning. They had hot water, but no electricity, which meant the gas furnace didn't have a starter. At first, it seemed manageable--their neighbors across the street who did have power fed them dinner and let them boil water for a thermos so they could make tea--but it got old (not to mention COLD) when the outage stretched into the second and third days.
They didn't sleep here. Mom was worried about leaving the cats, and the running water (to keep the pipes from freezing), and adding to the temptation for burglars. Most of the other families had gone to hotels or relatives' places already. But I convinced Mom to come charge her cell phone and her Kindle. She knew how to put books on her Kindle once I linked it to my WiFi. I'm so proud! And mostly I felt good that I was able to offer her a place and some time to relax and warm up again, and use a hair dryer after a good shampooing. Dad's a busy bee, so we just let him go about his business and made sure he got his hot soup when he did come over.
I did have school on Friday, and when I came home I could tell they'd been here. Not in a bad way. It was just- Well, they touched my things. My living room was rearranged. Someone had "tidied" my linen closet. My "Nobody touches my things I'M THE MIDDLE CHILD!" feeling lasted only a few seconds, and then I shrugged. It wasn't the end of the world. And when I was here at the same time, I kind of liked having other people around, and real reasons to run the dishwasher more often, and doing what I could for them (what they'd let me do for them!). Tonight, shortly after we'd eaten dinner, one of my parents' neighbors called my Dad to say the power was back on. A few minutes later, they were on the road (in the snow, again, ugh) heading back to their home to get ready to watch Downton Abbey. And just like that, my home was back to its usual routine of Sleeping Calico, Typing Library Dragon.
In recent times, I have struggled with and worried that I've been single and living on my own for so long that it would be impossible for me to live with anyone else, especially a significant other, and I'm doomed to be alone for the rest of my life and should just start saving for a bigger place to keep all the cats I'm going to adopt and fuss over.
Maybe, just maybe, I'm not terrible company. I'm not a bad hostess. And I'm not completely and hopelessly set in my ways.