In my mind, I try on lives like people try on shoes.
I see the way that people live. How they choose to decorate their house, or style their hair, or sort their books. How they chose not to own books, or cars, or expensive things. How they choose to only buy designer, or only antique, or only locally made.
And I don’t have to be doing an empathy test to walk a mile – I already am.
Would I like to live amongst so much stuff? Would I like to live with almost nothing? Would I like to own a cottage or a boat or a European vacation home? Would I like two dogs or four cats or only a goldfish?
No matter the question and no matter the scenario, my positive outlook always leads me to – yes. I would.
When my husband and I bought our first home, my struggle was not so much with finding a house that I liked, but with choosing one. I could see myself living in every single one – quite happily. Even the one that I believe was entirely below grade and had maybe one window in its entirety. I actually gave it a think over…before my husband nudged me not so subtly and grabbed my wrist knowing it wouldn’t be long until my imagination would fully engulf us both.
This interest in other people’s lives sometimes does and sometimes does not come with an interest in studying the current occupant of said life. Like Quitter, I tend to have my energy sucked up quickly by the personalities of others and so while I like people, I struggle to be around them for long stretches. I suspect I have an inner time limit. I’m guessing it’s around 2 hours. Not for everyone. Sometimes I think it might be helpful if I had an internal chime that went off on that 2 hour mark. A polite reminder that our time is up; it is not you, it is me. I simply need a recharge and I will be hiding in my bed.
But during that time I will be daydreaming of all the different life scenarios that would all lead me back to happiness.
Except for the friend who chooses to not own any books. That would never fit into any of my multiple daydream lives.