I never liked the word “homebody.” It sounds like one of those words we make up to make ourselves sound trendier or more innovative than we are. Like “staycation”– people have stayed home for eons, but now it’s something to plan and do to make us forget we don’t have the money to go on a real vacation.
Yet, it’s the word that came to mind as I was walking down to the Co-op a few minutes ago, on my way to buy some Cumberland sausages for dinner. If you’re curious: Roseval potatoes, boiled and then stir-fried in some bacon fat, tossed with a mango chutney-lime-honey mustard dressing, in a green salad with some more of that dressing. On the side, cumberland sausages and pan-fried turkey escalopes because I love leftovers. And I’ll have a mug of smoked paprika rutabaga (swede) cream soup on the side. Side Note: it’s worth bookmarking that potato link above. Only in England would there be a website (and Twitter account?) devoted to the humble potato.
We ventured out to a friend’s housewarming party last night and while it was fun, I couldn’t stop thinking about the 3-inch memory foam mattress topper that arrived via Amazon that morning, and fantasizing about the good night’s sleep ahead. On weeknights and increasingly weekends, too, there’s often nothing I want more than to throw on my sweatpants, cozy up with a gigantic mug of tea (this one, lately), and serial-watch House or Dexter.
So I’m not using the word “homebody” to make myself sound cooler than I am, or to apologize that I’m allergic to socializing because I’m a homebody, you see, and we homebodies just don’t do well with too much noise or excitement.
I’m using it because there just isn’t a better descriptor for wanting to stay home with my husband and cats most of the time.
People like me will also use phrases like “I’m getting too old for that,” and I want to avoid that because it sounds like an apology. It’s okay to enjoy some solitude, and I wonder how much of “homebodying” is actually about being more comfortable with ourselves, and by ourselves, as we grow up. I would have said “as we grow beyond the awkward years,” though I have a suspicion they’re all a little awkward, whether we’re in our mid-twenties or thirties or the mid-life crisis and beyond.
My point is, I used to dread being alone or staying in, and now I don’t. How about you?
P.S. I finally looked at my wedding photos this weekend, and threw a bunch on Shutterfly if anyone wants to hang a poster-sized print of us kissing on their walls: https://johnandcleagotmarried.shutterfly.com