Private Revolution: J Is for Just Stayed Home

So often when talking to friends or family who ask, “So what did you do this weekend?” my response is “I just stayed home.”

Why do I feel the need to add just, I wonder? Almost always, I wanted to be at home, doing routine things, indexing, writing, reading, cooking, feeding my betta fish. I’ve always been like this, but I also suspect that it sounds very boring to many people.

What a joy to read Elizabeth Wildman’s “In Praise of Peace, Quiet, and Rug Picnics,” published on Susan Cain’s Quiet Revolution website, and know that I am far from alone:

I’ve always been self-conscious—if not downright apologetic—about being a homebody. That’s the term I would have used to describe myself back when I was a latch-key kid growing up in the suburbs, spending most of my free time curled beneath a blanket with a book. Or writing in my diary. Or daydreaming, cat in lap. I didn’t really know what an introvert was or understand the exact reasons why I wanted to be left alone, but my desire to withdraw from the outside world seemed wrong somehow, and I struggled to invent excuses for my behavior. “Sorry,” my little brother was trained to say to anyone who called for me. “She can’t come to the phone right now.” “Sorry,” I might say if I was invited to a sleepover party. “I’m coming down with a cold.”

Of course, I couldn’t just tell my friends the truth: that the social demands of the school day left me depleted and I needed time and space to recover and rebuild my confidence. Would they think I was weird? Dump me from their inner circle? (They did both, eventually.) Read more

JThis post is part of the April A to Z Blog Challenge. For more on my 2016 theme of Private Revolution, see A Is for Ambition. Click here to read all posts in the Private Revolution A to Z Challenge blog series.

4 thoughts on “Private Revolution: J Is for Just Stayed Home

  1. I love this….I am becoming more and more like this, and it has worried me. I have scored as an extrovert on every test since I was probably 5 years old. I like people, I like action, but suddenly as I reached retirement age and pulled back on my fiscal responsibilities, I all I want is to have some peace and quiet. I want to Just Stay Home. Sometimes I think about the fact that for a long time my dad came to see me….then at some point he stopped, and I had to always go see him. I want to just stay here and have the world come to me for a change after years of going out pursuing it. Maybe those who are introverts always have this wall blocking their outward movement. I’m just now experiencing it. Let me stay home and write or work on projects or pet the cat. Let me Just Stay Home!

    • Sally, that is really interesting! Research bears out your experience, as well. One study of the Big Five personality traits across the lifespan showed “Extraversion showed a linear pattern of age differences such that the youngest group scored the highest and the oldest group scored the lowest on this measure.”

  2. Love this. I’m also becoming such a “just stayed home” type of person as I grow older. When I was very young, I was similar. I was satisfied with the world inside of my mind. When I became a young adult, there were other places and things I wanted to see and understand. Now, growing older, I find that I far prefer to be at home – my favorite world – with my family.

  3. We are alike in so many ways, Marianne! I am grateful that technology allows such easy contact with our son and daughter-in-law, extending the concept of home much further.

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